COLUMBUS –House Minority Leader Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron), Assistant Minority Leader Kristin Boggs (D-Columbus), Minority Whip Rep. Paula Hicks-Hudson (D-Toledo) and Assistant Minority Whip Rep. Richard Brown (D-Canal Winchester) issued a statement Tuesday following reports that House Republicans voted to remove Larry Householder (R-Glenford) as Speaker of the House.
Householder was arrested last week amid an FBI criminal investigation into his connection to an alleged $60 million public corruption and bribery scheme—the largest in state history. Democrats called for his resignation last week and sent a letter* to House Republicans Monday formally calling for his removal.
“The past week has been a dark time for our state. For the second time in three years, Republican leadership has betrayed the people of Ohio, corrupted our Statehouse repeatedly and proven they are unfit to lead. Ohioans deserve better than this continued, deep-seated Republican culture of corruption that puts special interests and self-enrichment before the needs of everyday Ohioans. A Republican culture of corruption that we are learning potentially permeates more than just the Ohio House.
Removing Householder from the dais was a necessary decision and one that should not have required so much debate and hand-wringing. The disgraced Republican Supermajority’s desperate attempts to shift the focus away from their failed leader who allegedly orchestrated the largest public corruption and bribery scheme in Ohio history is pathetic. And Ohioans are smarter than that.
We refuse to let the latest GOP scandal derail the Ohio House of Representatives from the pressing work that needs to be done. We do not need these distractions; we need to work to solve the critical issues facing working people and families in our state. Republicans are still in power and have yet another chance to do the right thing; we hope this time, for the sake of everyday Ohioans, they take that responsibility more seriously.
House Democrats urge an official vote on Householder’s removal as soon as possible. And if the Republican House members refuse to do what’s right for Ohioans in a timely manner, we will call on the governor to clean up the mess his fellow republicans have made.”
*A copy of the letter sent Monday from Democratic leadership is attached.