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Ohio reopens probe into pro-pot petitions

Posted at 7:27 PM, Sep 09, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Ohio's elections chief says he has reissued subpoenas in an investigation into the ballot petitions of group supporting a marijuana legalization effort.

The move by Secretary of State Jon Husted on Wednesday follows a federal lawsuit over his review of ResponsibleOhio's petition signatures.

A person identified as "John Doe" filed the suit last week. He alleges subpoenas in the probe seek documents from ResponsibleOhio with residents' personal information, creating a "chilling effect" and violating the First Amendment and privacy rights of those who support the legalization proposal.

Husted's special investigator withdrew the subpoenas Tuesday. Husted says new ones were issued Wednesday to ResponsibleOhio's leaders.

A court hearing scheduled for Thursday was canceled after Doe withdrew a temporary restraining order request, citing the withdrawal of the earlier subpoenas.