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A PEOPLE FIRST PLATFORM

For People First Priorities

Cory D. Hoffman
Democratic Nominee for State Representative,
Ohio’s 67th House District
CORY HOFFMAN
FOR STATE REPRESENTATIVE
Ohio’s 67th House District – Delaware, Ohio

One of my surest memories as a kid was that whenever my Grandma Pete would babysit us, she would be
listening to Rush Limbaugh. She was a true “ditto head” - as Rush calls his devoted listeners. As I got a little older,
I asked her what it was that made her a Republican and not a Democrat. She told me that since the Great
Depression up through President Kennedy – she and her family were always Democrats because “Democrats
were for working people. They always put ordinary people first”. She believed that somewhere along the line, the
Democratic Party had gotten away from that – and so she decided to try being a Republican. She didn’t leave the
party because the GOP was so great, but because she felt the Democratic Party got away from its roots.

In this election, we Democratic Candidates have an opportunity to help bring the party back to its roots; back to
the old school Democratic Party - the JFK Democratic Party; and once again be the Party that puts People First -
the People First Party.

As candidates on the People First Party’s ticket - we’ve spent the summer going around talking voters of all
political stripes finding out what top five issues matter the most to you. We got our answers and this fall, we’ll be
out there letting folks know that we heard you and we listened to you. The Bottom Line; if you vote for us - the
People First Party - we’re going to act on the following People First Priorities that people like you told candidates
like us that you were concerned about:

1. An Economy with Good Jobs that Can Support a Family
2. Equal Educational Opportunity
3. Fighting for Women
4. Affordable Healthcare
5. Leaders and Politicians that You Can Trust

But - voters want a little less talk and a lot more action. It’s not about just getting the job and talking a good game
- it’s about getting the job done. And so, as the “People First Party’s” Candidate for State Representative here in
Ohio’s beautiful 67th House District, I’ve laid out some policy ideas and proposals in this People First Platform that
our campaign has come up with after talking with voters all throughout the district that we feel can make Ohio a
better place to live, work and build a family with regard to those five People First Priorities. Thanks for reading and
I hope I don’t bore you too much!

Yours Truly with Honor, Courage and Commitment,

Cory D. Hoffman
Democratic Candidate for Ohio’s 67th House District
(P.S. The ideas & policy proposals contained herein are my own and don’t necessarily reflect the opinion
of the Ohio Democratic Party as a whole).

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A PEOPLE FIRST ECONOMY
“An Economy that Can Support a Family with Good Jobs and Fair Wages”

Overview:
After talking to voters all summer, I think there are three ideas we might try to help foster a People First
Economy that can support a family all throughout Ohio.
1st, our current sources of public revenue at the state and local level - the sales tax, income tax, locality
income taxes, etc. – harm our economy and are insufficient tax bases to support other People First
Priorities like equal educational opportunity and affordable healthcare - things which will ultimately
promote a People First Economy themselves. Moreover. Ohio’s buffet of different tax bases such as the
disastrously complex array of municipal income taxes that differ from city to city - are not optimal tax
bases regardless of the amount of public revenue we want to raise. We should try a different approach
to raising public revenue which I describe below.
2nd, wage growth has stagnated since the 1970’s in large part because of certain federal government
policies put into place by Congress and the Federal Reserve that we here in Ohio have no control over.
Therefore, we should try doing something to reduce debt burdens on Ohioans, so they can be better off
in real terms despite sluggish wage growth.
3rd, we can reform JobsOhio to ensure that the unemployed can always find work, raise the floor of the
economy from unemployment at a $0 wage to socially valuable employment at a wage floor that can
eventually support a family – giving wages upward momentum throughout the whole economy from the
bottom up, while giving also providing time and opportunity for small enterprises to adapt as their sales
increase.

“The Public Revenue Reform Act”

The Public Revenue Reform Act would modify & broaden the Financial Institutions (“FIT”) Tax enacted by
the Republican General Assembly and the Kasich Administration in 2014 and allow for the eventual repeal
and replacement of Ohio’s other tax bases e.g. the state income tax, sales tax & local property taxes.

Unlike Ohio’s other tax bases such as the income tax or sales tax, The FIT revenue base, when modified
as I propose to reach “obligation value” rather than capital value, provides a broad, multi-trillion-dollar tax
base that would allow Ohio to raise substantially more public revenue for the other People First Priorities
described below. Moreover, the burden of this public revenue base is borne by the most well off -
satisfying traditionally Democratic values. Additionally, the base is broad enough that it affords both low
rates and the opportunity to repeal or reduce less optimal sources of public revenue such as the Ohio

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State Income Tax, State and Local Sales & Use Taxes, local property taxes and municipal income taxes -
satisfying traditionally Republican values.

“The Bank of Ohio Act”

Every politician talks about how we they want to increase wages. It’s not hard to see why - wage-growth
has stagnated for the average Ohioan since the 1970’s. Consequently, for the economy to continue to
expand over the last several decades, Ohio consumers and businesses have had to increasingly turn to
using private debt to finance the personal consumption and investment necessary to drive the sales that
make an economy grow - from student loans & credit cards, to business credit & mortgages. Think about
something many of us use now - the concept of “Everyday Credit Cards” - where we now essentially rent
purchasing power from large financial institutions to buy essentials like gas and groceries.

This is the reality we live in. As a result, Ohio’s economy is burdened by enormous levels of private debt.
And, voters get this from their own personal lives. They wonder how can their kids hope to get mortgages
if they’re already paying the monthly equivalent of a mortgage in student loan payments?

So, while there are limits to what we can do at the state-level to promote broad general wage growth
because of certain policies put into place by Congress and the Federal Reserve - we can do something
about these private debt burdens to make Ohioans better off in real terms despite slow wage growth.

What can we do? We can pass a “Bank of Ohio Act” and have the Ohio Treasurer Incorporate a state-
bank; a public Bank of Ohio - modeled after the Bank of North Dakota; America’s only Public Bank in one
of the most conservative states in the country; a bank that fared better during and after the financial crisis
than Wall St. Banks.

As in North Dakota, the Bank of Ohio can alleviate private debt burdens, refinance debts at lower rates,
improve aggregate Ohio credit scores, provide innovative credit facilities to promote entrepreneurship
and job training and any other number of things. As such, the Bank of Ohio would be a People First Bank
that frees Ohioans to prosper, empowers them – whether that’s to start a business, to get an education,
to purchase new goods & services or to save for their future.

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“The Ohio Enterprise Act”

According to the BLS August Jobs Report, Ohio’s U-3 unemployment rate is 4.6% - meaning that 256
thousand Ohioans remain involuntarily unemployed despite our improving economy.

And the thing is – this is basically as good as it’s going to get. The Federal Reserve has started raising
interest rates which means that they believe that our economy is basically at “full employment”; that is,
we have just about as many people employed as we possibly can in America without prices getting out of
control.

Otherwise, if too many more people get employed, the Federal Reserve believes wages will rise too fast
and too much! In other words, we have a policy in place at the Federal Government level that basically
says that 265,000 Ohioans are out of luck - that so many Ohioans must remain unemployed for the good
of the country. The involuntarily unemployed are hung on a cross of price stability. They’re unemployed
by public policy design. But – it doesn’t’ have to be this way. We use agricultural buffer stock policies so
that we don’t let corn or soybeans be unemployed or unused, yet we let thousands of Ohioans go without
work. We can create of system of buffer stock employment rather than buffer stock unemployment.

Rather than leaving thousands of Ohioans doomed to unemployment, we can use JobsOhio to hire people
and create jobs in a way that fits within the Federal Reserve’s current policy.

We might call this policy the “Ohio Enterprise Act” – an act which would use proceeds from the FIT
revenue described above and build upon the work of JobsOhio to create what is functionally an “Employer
of Last Resort” network of private-sector non-profits and social enterprises.

Through an “Ohio Enterprise Authority”, JobsOhio would allocate funds to nonprofits and charities like
churches and Habitat for Humanity to provide non-government, socially-valuable, private-sector work
opportunities to any and all unemployed Ohioans willing and able to work - as they are and with whatever
skills they have – right in their own communities. Functionally, we would transform our system of
unemployment with insurance to a system of employment assurance.

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To start out, the wages paid to “Enterprisers” working in the “Enterprise Programs” would be the current
Ohio minimum wage. Over time, as the economy adapts, the wages and total compensation will rise to a
living wage and compensation package that can support a family. Moreover, since evidence clearly
indicates that private employers prefer to poach currently employed workers rather than hire the
unemployed – the “Enterprise jobs” would serve primarily as “transition jobs” for the majority of
“Enterprisers” as private employers would have the confidence to hire them.

Right now - for 265,000 Ohioans - at a minimum - who are officially counted as involuntarily unemployed
- even in this so-called “good economy” - the statutory minimum wage is not their wage. Their wage is
zero because they can’t get jobs and are unemployed by design. Therefore, the wage floor of our economy
is not the statutory minimum wage - it’s zero. The Ohio Enterprise Act would raise the wage floor in Ohio
to the meet the statutory minimum wage and eventually a living wage that can provide a livelihood.

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PEOPLE FIRST PUBLIC EDUCATION
Equal Educational Opportunity
The latest school report cards as well as the closures and early dismissals in schools such as Buckeye
Valley East Elementary illustrate that Ohio still fails to deliver an equal & equitable educational opportunity
for all children throughout our state. At the heart of the American Idea is the proposition that the condition
of our birth should not determine the outcome of our life. Yet, for many years now the Ohio General
Assembly has been in default on its obligation to strive for that ideal and eliminate locality-based funding
of education following the decision in DeRolph v. State. Indeed, previous efforts taken by the legislature
- such as capping the amount of funding appropriated to growing school districts - have only exacerbated
the problem as the most well-off districts have understandably had to rely even more heavily on local
property taxes in the face of these state budget cuts.

The Equitable Education Funding Act
We need a fundamentally novel approach to funding public education in Ohio. I propose that we pass an
“Equitable Education Funding Act”. Instead of relying on local fiscal capacity, the state of Ohio will
appropriate all necessary and sufficient funding to all local school districts from proceeds raised through
the single, broad, state-wide revenue base derived from the Public Revenue Reform Act described above.
Under this policy, we can finally satisfy the Ohio Supreme Court’s order in DeRolph and no longer finance
public education with local property taxes.
The new revenue should be allocated to all of Ohio’s school districts on a per pupil basis based on the
cost to educate a child. Accordingly, the state capital budget should provide funding for capital
improvements (e.g., air conditioning) to the districts as is necessary and proper.
Over time, local school district property taxes could be eliminated, and we could lift up all of our school
districts without creating incentives that make inequality/inequity worse or punishing the most well-off
districts.

School Report Card Reform
From just a pure branding perspective I can’t imagine anybody thought it would be a good idea for our
own state government to purposely and deliberately brand our schools with gigantic D’s and F’s. When
the state of Ohio Brands Buckeye Valley East with a gigantic D, the Ohio Department of Education might
as well put up a gigantic billboard over I-71 discouraging people from trying to build a life here in the 67th
House District. I challenge any member of the Ohio General Assembly to go down and meet the people
working to teach kids at Buckeye Valley East and tell me that those folks are doing a “D” job.
I know as a parent that I will work hard to help my children succeed no matter what schools they go to
and these “Report Cards” ought to actually provide useful information for people who want to live, work
and start families in Ohio.

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A PEOPLE FIRST HEALTHCARE SYSTEM
Making Healthcare More Affordable for All Ohioans
Under the Affordable Care Act and the Medicaid Expansion in Ohio, we have made progress in helping
more Ohioan’s be able to get health insurance. But, the system continues to have challenges as the risk
pools have become less healthy overall and healthier individuals who don’t receive healthcare coverage
through their employers have still been reluctant to purchase insurance in the healthcare marketplace
because the cost is still too high. In turn, these pressures have had the effect of increasing deductibles
and premiums for the rest of Ohio that does have insurance.

The Healthcare Credit Line Act

As I mentioned earlier, it is my view that the constrained balance sheets of many Ohioans due to high
private debt levels create “balance sheet drag” on Ohio’s economy. Our economy runs on people using
private credit and therefore most Ohioans aren’t able to take advantage of tax preferences for saving -
this is particularly true for health savings accounts.

So, I think one idea we might try is to have the Bank of Ohio described above - either through direct
issuance or by guarantees through private financial institutions - provide Ohioans access to special
healthcare lines of credit to cover healthcare costs not covered by insurance such as deductibles,
premiums, co-pays and treatments Insurance refuses to cover.

I imagine two separate types if lines. First, we might try “Flexline” accounts that would be issued annually
and might be, say, up to $2,500 that Ohioans could “use or lose” to shop in the marketplace for
preventative care like checkups, teeth cleanings, etc.

Second, we might have a second line - “Healthlines” that would be larger and would rollover. These could
be used to cover the costs of deductibles, premiums, drugs not covered by insurance, etc.

All in all, these reforms would fill a needed gap in the current healthcare system that would make
healthcare more affordable for Ohioans.

The Opiate Epidemic Accountability Resolution/Act

As the Opioid epidemic rages on, more and more information is coming to light to show that these Opiate
manufacturers were perfectly aware of the dangers & risks their products posed to Ohio. For these
reasons, the Ohio Attorney General is currently suing Purdue Pharmaceuticals and other firms for their
role(s) in fostering the opioid epidemic. Purdue - as one example - has previously settled a similar lawsuit
with the federal government for $600 million. We can’t let that happen unless they take accountability
for what they have done to our state.

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The General Assembly should pass a resolution demanding that the Attorney General not settle unless
these firms that profited from this crisis agree to cover the cost of providing addiction and recovery
treatment for Ohioans.

Ideally, this would include demanding that they cover the cost of an effective treatment option
manufactured right here in Ohio - intravenous Vivitrol - which has shown efficacy in actually reducing the
craving for opioids that are at the heart of addiction. (Unfortunately, the drug currently costs nearly
$1,300 per month). If the Attorney General fails, the General Assembly should try an accountability tax
on opiate manufacturers to cover this cost based upon their gross receipts from Ohio - a tax modeled
after the Commercial Activities Tax enacted under Governor Kasich.

The Nurse Practitioner Opportunity Act

While the Healthcare Credit Line Act would help Ohioan’s on the demand-side of the healthcare economy,
there is a simple thing we could do to help Ohioans on the supply-side to increase the availability of basic
healthcare services. Under current law, Nurse Practitioners are unable to practice without being
supervised by a Physician. By simply allowing Nurse Practitioners to open their own practices, Ohio
consumers will have another option to go to receive healthcare that would reduce costs.

Health Care Price Transparency

Some elements of the healthcare marketplace would substantially benefit from more market norms. And,
with Ohioans being able to use their Flexline Cards to be better healthcare consumers, we can help create
a better functioning market that will reduce costs. For example, when I go to buy a new pair of glasses or
contact lenses - the prices for these products should be as transparent as the price of items on a grocery
store shelf.

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FIGHTING FOR WOMEN
Being People First Mean’s Addressing the Unique Challenges of Women
Women in Ohio are craving something more than vague policy options - they want to know that their
political leadership will stand up for women, fight for women and take on the challenges that particularly
affect women - things like domestic violence and sexual harassment, the possibility of working while
pregnant, navigating careers that have traditionally been dominated by men – and so on and so forth. The
People First Party has to offer something for those unique challenges.

“The Accountability in Office Act”

Without getting into specifics, in Delaware County we had a high-profile incident involving a local
politician accused of domestic violence that still makes the news today. In this instance, local sheriff’s
deputies obtained probable cause to charge the politician with domestic violence but due to the
reluctance of the victim to testify - something that is a common in such cases - the prosecutor did not
proceed with the case.

Rightly or wrongly, there was a perception throughout the community that the case was dropped for
political reasons - eroding trust in the justice system and serving as a prime example that shows women
that they often cannot rely on their government to fight for them. And the thing is, no matter if the
prosecutor made the best choice under the circumstances - it was a no-win situation because perception
is reality and even the perception of injustice harms our community and harms women.

So, what I propose is that - in any instance where there is an investigation or complaint against an elected
official that is founded upon good probable cause - such as sheriff’s deputies being called to the politician’s
property to investigate a domestic violence complaint - that the investigation and potential prosecution
automatically be referred to a special prosecutor with no possibly conceivable conflicts of interest. This
way, the public can be confident in our justice system and we can avoid any possible perception of
impropriety altogether.

In Delaware County we’ve seen how successful this can be. Our great County Prosecutor Carol O’Brien
served as the special prosecutor in a case involving certain corrupt activities by a Sheriff in a northern
Ohio county and was able to bring justice in that case when there was resistance among local officials to
do so.

Moreover, since public employees like Delaware County Sheriff’s deputies are required to refrain from
political action while they’re serving the public, they ought to have a cause of action for Wrongful
Discharge if they can prove that they have been terminated for political purposes – as many folks around
here think is what happened in the case described above. Law Enforcement is expected by the public to
be apolitical and to enforce the equal protection of the law. They deserve to be able to seek redress in
the courts if they are terminated for being insufficiently political.

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LEADERSHIP YOU CAN TRUST
Earning the Public’s Trust Requires a People First Political System
The thing I hear from voters the most is a general disdain for the current political system. People think all
politicians are crooks. They hate the two-party system, they don’t think their votes matter and most of
them would rather avoid politics altogether.

I think a large part of this is due to the design of our electoral process. Political Scientists know that a
“First-Past-The-Post”, “Winner-Take-All” electoral system like what we have - wherein the politician in a
legislative district that receives the most votes wins 100% of the voting power - necessarily results in two
party systems that most people can’t stand. As a result, half of the population feels disenfranchised and
politicians work to rig the districts in their favor - often splitting communities apart despite having common
interests.

For example, under the current system, Delaware County is split in half into two separate districts for the
Ohio House of Representatives – districts which diminish the common interest of County Residents.
Moreover, most districts like these have been “Gerrymandered” – artfully crafted to protect incumbents
& certain parties. This makes many elections uncompetitive and the legislators who win them
unaccountable to the public. As such, candidates can get elected without hardly any personalized voter
outreach. Moreover, Representatives and Senators can win 50.1% of the votes in these districts and yet
claim to represent 100% of their constituents. Also, candidates with a gerrymandered advantage are more
apt to rely on campaign financing from powerful interests since all they have to do is be the “First-Past-
The-Post” and do not have to connect with individual voters. All too often the result is divisive, attack-
style campaigning rather than a robust public discourse.

In my humble opinion, all of this contributes to the general disillusionment that is so prevalent among the
common voter and undermines the guarantee of representative Democracy through a Republican form
of government as outlined in the United States Constitution. A People First Political System is one that
would represent all voters.

The All Voters Matter Act

The “All Voters Matter Act” would reform The Ohio General Assembly’s current organizational structure
comprised of 99 “first-past-the-post”, single-member legislative districts in the Ohio House of
Representatives and 33 “first-past-the-post”, single-member legislative districts in the Ohio Senate with
88 proportional vote, multi-member districts – one district per county – in the Ohio House and 22
proportional vote, multi-member districts – each district being comprised of four counties.

Accordingly, each district would have multiple-representatives in the Ohio Assembly. The Representatives
and Senators would not wield just one single vote in the Assembly but multiple votes proportional to the

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number of votes they received in the election. Moreover, the Act will include other reforms such as
“Ranked-Choice Voting” and a sales tax on copious amounts of political campaign advertising i.e. the tens
of millions of dollars’ worth of campaign advertisements paid for by outside “dark-money” groups that
bombard our televisions each election. The proceeds from the sales tax would be used to support a
modest public-campaign finance system for Ohio legislative races and candidates so that - instead of
spending 8 hours day raising money - they’ll have no excuse but to spend their time engaging with the
public.

Often when I have discussed this idea with voters I have done a bad job of explaining it. So, I thought I
would include the following key points below:

KEY ELEMENTS
- Multi-Member House and Senate Districts & Representatives with Proportional Voting Power
o There is no “Winner-take-all” – a Party’s candidate(s) that receive greater than 10% of the
Vote in a district would be elected to the General Assembly and have the number of votes
they received in the election, in the Assembly:
▪ Example: In the Franklin County House District, a single Republican Candidate Receives
20,000 votes out of 100,000 (20%) while 3 Democrats together receive 75,000 votes
collectively (75% - 25,000 for two of them and 20,000 for the third) and a Libertarian
Candidate Receives 10,000 votes (10%) – all five candidates would be elected. The
Republican would have 20,000 votes in the Assembly. Two of the Democrats would have
25,000 votes while the third would have 20,000. And, the Libertarian would have 10,000
votes.
o Parties Can Put-Forth Multiple Candidates to a General Election that win greater than X%
in the Primary Election based on the County-Party’s Choosing:
▪ Example: In the Delaware County House District, The Delaware County Republican Party
sets 20% as the threshold to advance to the General Election. Five Republicans Enter the
Primary – two incumbents and three political newcomers. Four out of Five of the
candidates receive greater than 20% of the Primary vote. Four candidates advance to the
General Election.
o The Party-List Option – If a County Party so desires, it can put its primary winners on the
General Election Ballot as a “Party-List” – votes will be apportioned pro-rata:
▪ Example: In the Delaware County House District, Two Democrats, Three Libertarians and
Four Republicans advance to the General Election. The Republican and Libertarian Parties
of Delaware County vote to put their candidates on the General Election Ballot as a
“Party-List” while the Democratic Party does not. The Republican Party-List receives

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40,000 votes. One Democrat receives 20,000 votes while the second receives 10,000
votes. The Libertarian Party-List receives 30,000 votes.
▪ In this example, all candidates are elected. The Four Republican Candidates would each
have 10,000 votes in the Assembly. One Democratic Candidate would have 20,000 votes
while the other would have 10,000. And, the two libertarians would each have 5,000
votes.
▪ Example: In the Franklin County House District, 10 Democrats and 10 Republicans
advance to the general election. Both parties use the party-list option. The Democratic
ticket receives 350,000 votes while the Republican ticket receives 200,000 votes. Each
Democratic Legislator would have 35,000 votes while each Republican legislator would
have 20,000 votes in the Assembly.

- Ranked Choice Voting
o Voters Will Rank the Candidates/Party-Lists (1st, 2nd, etc.) and if their first, second, choice
does surpass the 10% threshold, their vote transfers to their second-choice, and so-on.
▪ Example: In the Delaware County House District, a voter picks the Green Party Candidate
as her 1st Choice in the General Election, a Democratic Candidate as her second choice
and a third Democratic Candidate as their third choice. Neither her 1 st Choice nor her 2nd
Choice surpasses the 10% threshold. Her vote “transfers” to her 3rd choice – thereby
making sure votes for long-shots or third-parties, etc. “always count”.
▪ Example: In the Delaware County House District, a voter picks an Independent Candidate
as his first choice, a Republican Candidate as his second choice and a Democratic
Candidate as his third choice. The Independent Candidate does not break the 10%
threshold while both the Republican and Democratic Candidates do. The vote transfers
to the Republican Candidate.

- A Sales Tax on Political Advertising
o A Surcharge on Political Advertising expenditures in excess of $250,000 can help cover
the cost of these reforms as well as unbiased voter-guides provided to the public by the
Ohio Boards of Election;
▪ The never-ending bombardment of political advertisements are universally hated by
voters across party-lines. They are biased and contribute to a more hostile public
discourse.
▪ $8 million was spent just on the August Special Election for Ohio’s 12 th Congressional
District alone - $85 million was spent in Ohio in 2016.

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▪ A small surcharge on this spending – much of which is done by secretive political action
committees run by operatives with no nexus to Ohio could be used to cover the cost of
these reforms & fund unbiased voter guides disseminated by the non-partisan Boards of
Election that evens the playing field for candidates who don’t receive special interest
campaign funding and allow all legislative candidates to reach voters via public financing.
▪ Candidates for Office would be able to reach voters without spending hours a day calling
special interests trying to raise money. Legislators could be legislators instead of
professional fundraisers.

A PEOPLE FIRST CONCLUSION
Thank you for taking the time to read through this People First Platform for People’s First Priorities. While
I think these ideas are promising ideas – my role as a legislator is analogous to my role as an attorney in
my private career. As an attorney, my job is to provide my clients with ideas and strategies that I think will
help them achieve their goals and priorities. But, at the end of the day – I have an open mind and do what
my client thinks is best. I think we should do the same in the General Assembly. We should represent the
people as they wish as best we can. Thanks again for reading. My apologies if there were a bunch of typos
that I missed!

Cory D. Hoffman
Democratic Nominee for Ohio’s 67th Ohio House District.

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