Video editorial: Ohioans are dying from heroin, 'Governor, do something!'

Posted at 10:09 AM, Dec 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-23 07:34:28-05

WCPO's editorial board in May first called on Ohio Gov. John Kasich to declare a statewide emergency over the heroin crisis. The reason: to immediately free up money and other resources to attack the epidemic that has taken the lives of thousands of Ohioans. 

READ MORE: Gov. Kasich, declare a heroin emergency

To that, the governor's office replied that he was treating the problem with a sense of urgency and that his Start Talking program, which provides materials for teachers and others to lead discussions, was key to addressing the problem.

His office also replied that he did not have the authority to declare a public health emergency over heroin. That seemed strange, because the governor has used his emergency powers 90 or more times since he's been in office. And he's used that power for much less, such as declaring an emergency so out-of-state police could be hired as security for last summer's Republican National Convention.

READ MORE: Faced with disaster, Kasich quibbles

Legislators, including members of Kasich's own party, also took up the call, adding to the pressure on the governor.

READ MORE: Editorial: Demand a state of emergency

The dialogue seemed to border on the absurd as Kasich's office insisted he did not have such power, while wielding that power for problems that seemed very minor in comparison. So we asked Cincinnati actor and comedian John Bromels to give us his take.