Ohio Alcohol Prohibition Enforcement, Referendum 1 (1920)
The Ohio Alcohol Prohibition Enforcement Referendum, also known as Referendum 1, was on the November 2, 1920 ballot ballot in Ohio as a veto referendum, where it was approved. The measure approved House Bill 620, also known as the Crabbe Act, which provided for state prohibition and its enforcement. However, in 1927 the act was overturned in the United States Supreme Court decision Tumey v. Ohio.
Tumey v. Ohio
After the enactment of the New Crabbe Act, a man, Tumey, was arrested and fined in Ohio for illegal possession of alcohol. One of the provisions of the Crabbe Act was to provide additional compensation to various officials for enforcement of liquor-related cases. Tumey appealed the case all the way to the United States Supreme Court that the act violated his right to "due process of law" under the 14th Amendment of the United States Constitution. The Supreme Court sided with Tumey, effectively overturning the New Crabbe Act.
Following the decision, the Ohio General Assembly passed new, but similar, legislation to provide compensation to officials for enforcement of prohibition. That legislation, known as the Marshall Bill, was put to veto referendum in 1927 and defeated.
|Ohio Referendum 1 (1920)|
|Overturned Case:Tumey v. Ohio 273 US 510 (1927)|
Election results via: Ohio Secretary of State
Text of measure
The language that appeared on the ballot:
|“||House Bill No. 620, Passed by the General Assembly of Ohio and Ordered Referred to the Electors of the State.
SHALL HOUSE BILL No. 620 BE APPROVED AS PASSED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY JANUARY 26, 1920, APPROVED BY THE GOVERNOR, FEBRUARY 16, 1920, AND FILED WITH THE SECRETARY OF STATE, FEBRUARY 17, 1920.
Path to the ballot
The 18th Amendment of the United States Constitution, enacting federal prohibition on alcohol, was ratified in 1919. Upon ratification, the Ohio General Assembly passed the first Crabbe Act to provide for strict enforcement of the amendment in Ohio. The Act was put on the 1919 ballot via referendum petition, where it was defeated. Shortly thereafter the General Assembly adopted the New Crabbe Act. This was again put to the referendum via petition and became this measure.
- Ohio 1920 ballot measures
- 1920 ballot measures
- List of Ohio ballot measures
- History of Initiative & Referendum in Ohio
- Ohio Secretary of State, "Amendment and Legislation: Proposed Constitutional Amendments, Initiated Legislation, and Laws Challenged by Referendum, Submitted to the Electors," accessed February 5, 2015
- State Library of Ohio, "Proposed constitutional amendments, initiated legislation and laws challenged by referendum, submitted to the electors," accessed February 5, 2015
- Ohio History Central, "The Crabbe Act," accessed February 5, 2015
- Ohio History Central, "Tumey v. Ohio," accessed February 5, 2015
- Youngstown Vindicator, "Sample Ballot," November 1, 1920
- Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
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