“Not Leading,” “DeWine Was Warned” and “I Don’t Know Him:” What’s Making Headlines With Republican #OHGOV Candidates This Week

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Good Monday afternoon, and welcome back to Mike Check, your weekly source of all the infighting, conspiracy spewing and corruption that’s making headlines in and around the Republican governor’s race and Mike DeWine’s statehouse, courtesy of the Ohio Democratic Party. 

As the gubernatorial race heats up, Republicans are in disarray with Mike DeWine’s popularity dropping by the day, facing attacks both inside and outside of the Republican Party and having to answer for the largest public corruption scandal in state history. It’s hard to keep up with all of the corruption and mess surrounding Mike DeWine and the GOP gubernatorial primary, so here are some stories you may have missed:

DEWINE DID NOT TAKE THE LEAD. If you’re looking for a leader on redistricting (or anything other than corruption, really), Mike DeWine is not the answer. This week, the Cincinnati Enquirer outlined previous comments from DeWine promising to take the lead on redistricting and how his actions haven’t reflected those promises. Instead of leading, DeWine has caved to legislative leaders time and time again, voting or signing into law each set of GOP-gerrymandered maps that has come before him. It’s clear DeWine is too weak to take the lead and will always put his own political interests over the needs of hard-working Ohioans. 

DEWINE WAS WARNED. It turns out that even Mike DeWine’s closest advisors thought appointing shady Sam Randazzo was a bad idea. Cleveland.com broke a story on Sunday showing a former DeWine campaign staffer, attorney J.B. Hadden, expressed concerns about appointing Randazzo shortly after DeWine took office, saying DeWine would regret the appointment. Those concerns were also shared with those in DeWine’s closest orbit, including former chief of staff Laurel Dawson. Of course, DeWine refused to listen, appointed Randazzo anyway and even after an FBI raid of Randazzo’s home, still said he did “very, very good work,” while saying he did not know about FirstEnergy’s payments to Randazzo. This latest example of failed leadership shows just how far DeWine will go to ignore what is right and only help those special interests with deep pockets who can help him and his family members.

I DON’T KNOW HIM.  Mike DeWine’s latest campaign ad shows a very different Mike DeWine than any of us have come to recognize. A commentary from Ohio Capital Journal skewered the ad, calling it “laughably bogus” and anointed DeWine “an unflinching champion of self-serving politics and party,” while questioning policy after policy made by DeWine that has hurt hard-working Ohioans the most.


Ohio Democrats Bring “Cost of Corruption” Tour to Zanesville

From the Largest Public Corruption Scandal in State History to Major Tax Breaks for the Wealthy, Ohioans are Paying Billions for Republican Corruption

Zanesville, OH —  Today, Ohio Attorney General candidate Jeff Crossman, Ohio Auditor candidate Taylor Sappington and Muskingum County Commissioner candidate John Furek brought the “Cost of Corruption” tour to Zanesville to highlight the high costs Ohioans are paying for GOP corruption under Mike DeWine’s leadership. 

Ohio Democrats drew the contrast between the high cost of Republican corruption and the Democratic plan to invest in working families and put the interests of working Ohioans first.

“Ohio finds itself in the middle of the largest public corruption scandal in state history that’s led to the arrest of a former Republican Party chair, the expulsion of a former Speaker of the House – an expulsion I helped lead – and the resignation of a top aide to Gov. Mike DeWine. Yet, working Ohioans are the ones covering the cost of the scandal, footing the bill for $287,000 in subsidies every single day,” said Ohio Attorney General candidate Jeff Crossman.

Under Mike DeWine’s leadership, Ohioans are paying billions for GOP corruption as Republican politicians look to line their own pockets and the pockets of dark money interest groups, all while leaving hard-working Ohioans behind. 

“I know firsthand how hard it is when you’re struggling to make ends meet – to put food on the table or pay for prescription drugs. The last thing we should be asking hard-working Ohioans to shell out for is GOP corruption that puts working families further and further behind,” said Ohio Auditor candidate Taylor Sappington.

Ohio Democrats are offering a better way forward.

“While Republicans are costing you billions, Ohio Democrats are investing over nine billion federal dollars to fix highways across Ohio, $100 million to bring broadband to those that don’t have it and $1.4 billion to assure clean and safe drinking water is available every time you turn on the tap,” said Muskingum County Commissioner candidate John Furek.

Ohioans are paying BILLIONS of dollars for GOP corruption at Mike DeWine’s statehouse, including:

  • $287,000 every single day for subsidies that bail out an out-of-state coal plant and are tied to the largest public corruption scandal in state history. The subsidies are estimated to cost Ohioans up to $1.8 billion by 2030. 
  • $9 billion for special interest tax giveaways that mostly benefit for-profit corporations.
  • $1.85 billion in tax breaks for the wealthy and well-connected, including wealthy GOP lawmakers who leave working Ohioans behind. 
  • $118 million in improper Medicaid payments made to ineligible dead or incarcerated individuals. 
  • $20 million promised in tax credits to Lordstown Motors, a company currently under investigation by the DOJ and SEC and that employs DeWine’s grandson as its lobbyist. 
  • $17.5 million settlement for a man who was paralyzed after being tackled by state prison guards. 
  • $9 million for the election chaos created by Republicans who refuse to pass fair maps. Their refusal to do their jobs will likely make a May 3 primary impossible, likely costing Ohioans another $20 million.  
  • $763,000 and counting to litigate the GOP-gerrymandered maps in court.  
  • $39,000 for Mike DeWine’s private airplane travel to taxpayer-funded photo ops in 2019.

At a time when Ohio families are worried about their ability to make ends meet, the last thing they should be spending their hard-earned money on is the corruption running rampant at Mike DeWine’s statehouse. Ohio Democrats are ready to offer a better way forward.


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The people of Ohio deserve a government that supports their hard work and shares their hopes for the future. Our platform represents the Democratic vision for our State, embracing and implementing the dreams of Ohioans. We firmly defend these American beliefs, values, and traditions and are fighting hard every day to elect Democrats who have the experience and ideas to improve our state and who will hold Columbus accountable.

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