From the monthly archives: May 2012

In a blockbuster report this morning, The New Republic uncovered that the FBI is investigating a slew of campaign donations to our absentee Treasurer Josh Mandel and his congressional buddy Jim Renacci.

News of yet another investigation is truly shocking, even for the likes of Mandel and Renacci, for whom scandals ordinarily constitute another day at the office.

As reported by The Toledo Blade in August of last year, the donations, totaling $100,000 each to Mandel and Renacci, came from just 16 employees of a marketing firm owned by Republican donor Benjamin Suarez, along with six of their spouses. Each made […]

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Last week we slammed the Ohio Republican Party for hiring a new executive director with a record of public corruption, but it turns out Matt Borges may have a redeeming quality: he is currently registered as a lobbyist for Equality Ohio.

Equality Ohio was founded by LGBT activists and allies in 2005 in response to the passage of a constitutional amendment that banned same sex marriage and civil unions in Ohio. Their mission is to “Advance Pro-Equality Legislation and Public Policies Throughout Ohio” and their primary strategic goal is “to achieve fair treatment and equal opportunity for all […]

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The Interwebz were abuzz this weekend with the story of Desmond Hatchett, a 33-year old Tennessee man who has managed to father 30 children ranging in age from toddler to 14 with 11 different women. He brags of having fathered 4 kids in a year, twice. Hatchett is complaining that his minimum wage paycheck can’t cover his child support expenses.

For a moment, let’s set aside the obvious questions, such as “why do you have to have a license to get a dog but not to have a kid?” and “why is it OK to interfere with women’s […]

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On April 1st, we reported that the FBI was investigating Kasich and his allies for using threats, intimidation and promises of influence during their take over of the State Central Committee. Yesterday – 48 days later – someone finally went on the record. In an email, Andrew Manning’s attorney confirmed the FBI investigation, and we broke the story.

[Joseph pats himself on the back]

But that’s nothing, really.

It took 56 days for anyone to confirm the story we posted on March 23th. That post included the full text of a complaint filed with the Ohio Ethics […]

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This week, Governor Kasich made a bit of a fuss about Vice President Biden’s visit, suggesting on Facebook and Fox News that the White House should not take credit for jobs created by Ohio’s auto industry. He then hilariously went on to do the exact same thing:

We have created 1,400 direct auto manufacturing jobs

Here’s the thing about taking credit for job creation. If you’re going to do it when jobs are up, you have to take the blame when they’re down.

Which brings us to today’s news. Back in April Kasich told anyone who’d listen that […]

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Two months ago Portage County Republican Party Chairman Andrew Manning asked the FBI to look into allegations that Manning had been asked to withdraw as a candidate for the state Central Committee race and in return he would be “given influence” over state government appointments. Manning’s attorney just confirmed that the FBI is looking into the charges.

In an email received minutes ago, Attorney David R. Langdon released this statement on behalf of Manning:

“FBI agents interviewed Andrew Manning last week. He answered questions about the statements in his affidavit, which he sent to the Justice Department in […]

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Vincent: Pilot? What’s a pilot?

Jules: Well, you know the shows on TV?

Vincent: I don’t watch TV.

Jules: Yeah, but, you are aware that there’s an invention called television, and on this invention they show shows, right?


Ohio Senate Republicans have proposed a three-county, two-year program where welfare applicants who are suspected of having a drug problem would have to submit to and pay for drug tests before receiving benefits.  The Dispatch notes that Ohio is not unique:  the “move appears to be part of a renewed national GOP movement to require drug testing for welfare recipients. . […]

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In 2010 Ed FitzGerald defeated Matt Dolan by a measure of two to one to win the race to be County Executive of Cuyahoga County.    Or, as I like to view it, FitzGerald won the high risk, low reward opportunity to clean up the mess that a bunch of knuckleheads who thought they were gangsters left behind for him. Even though FitzGerald was one of the only bright spots on election night in 2010, I still thought he probably had an up-hill climb that was littered with political landmines just waiting to explode.

In the last year and five months […]

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Ohio Republican Party Chairman Bob Bennett announced today that he’s hiring Matt Borges as executive director of ORP, despite the fact that Borges was involved in a public corruption scandal that likely cost Ohioans millions in bad investments.

Back in 2004 Borges pleaded guilty to steering state investment business to convicted swindlers like former Cuyahoga Lehman Brothers broker Frank Gruttadauria (who stolen millions from his clients) in exchange for campaign donations for his boss Joseph Deters which he funneled through the Hamilton County Republican Party to circumvent campaign finance limits.

Borges has since had his record expunged, […]

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Have you heard about ALEC?

The Center for Media and Democracy has just published a must-read report for anyone concerned about the shadowy influence of money on public policy in the Ohio Statehouse.  The report is pretty dense, so we will try to provide some context and observations.

Organizations such as People for the American Way, Think Progress, and Common Cause have been doing great work exposing ALEC.  Another good, dense, report from earlier this year can be found here.  The Daily Kos had information on this organization back in 2011, and other reports from earlier this year […]

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Last year, Governor Kasich’s wide-ranging budget bill (HB153) included a major reformation of the way teachers and principals are evaluated, and by the time the bill was signed into law, educators were able to claim some measure of victory by having language included requiring a local board of education to collaborate with the educators on the evaluation process.  As this has begun to be enacted, however, the Ohio Department of Education has engaged their attorneys in a process of re-interpreting the law, and they are now claiming that the creation and adoption of a teacher evaluation policy is not subject […]

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