The Ohio Republican Party hosted a press conference today to announce a new website,, attacking Democratic legislators for voting against “Job Creation Bills”.

The website (hosted on Tumblr) contains a single page with an excel spreadsheet screenshot showing the votes of Democratic lawmakers on five bills.

Two of the bills were overwhelmingly supported by Democrats.  One of the bills has since been disowned by Governor Kasich.  And the spreadsheet?    It doesn’t just incorrectly record votes but also fails to properly identify which legislators were even in the Ohio House at the time of the vote.

First the bills:

The website lists two JobsOhio bills (HB1 and SB314), the Jobs Retention Tax Credit bill (HB58), Kasich’s first budget bill (HB153) and the second version of the Great Lakes Compact bill (HB473).

As we’ve argued here many times before, there’s no proof JobsOhio has done anything the Ohio Department of Development couldn’t have accomplished while still having accountability, transparency, access to public records and the ability to avoid paying for Kasich’s travel to Europe. But at least HB1 and SB314 were somewhat related to jobs.

And if you look at the spreadsheet of votes, you’ll see a lot of blanks on the second bill.  That’s because Democrats actually voted FOR it.   Yes,  a blank on this spreadsheet most often means a YES vote.   And there are quite a few of them.

The second bill on the chart is HB58  – the Jobs Retention Tax Credit.  Again notice that most of Ohio’s Democrats voted FOR the bill.

While this bill could have been a great job retainer, it didn’t quite work out that way under Kasich.

Kasich insisted we desperately needed HB58 to keep Ohio companies from leaving the state.   And he used it to award hundreds of millions of dollars to Bob Evans, American Greetings and Diebold.   All three companies have since laid off Ohioans and/or cancelled their expansion plans.

Kasich’s implementation of HB58 was so unsuccessful that he and and JobsOhio have since announced they won’t be granting this type of award any longer.   “That program’s off the board,” said Kasich.  “It’s not on our website.”

Kasich’s first budget?  HB153 cut billions from schools and local governments and resulted in lost jobs around the state – including teachers, police, fire and EMS workers.

We honestly have no idea why the Great Lakes Compact bill (HB473) was included in this list.   The only thing we know for sure is that the first version of this bill, introduced by the Republican owner a bottled water company (Lynn Wachtmann), was so bad that Kasich actually vetoed it.

And now for the votes.

Connie Pillich was called out by name at the press conference as being an “Ohio Job Killer” for voting against the first JobsOhio bill (HB1).    Ms. Pillich actually broke party ranks and supported the bill on its third consideration in the House (see House Journal for Feb.1, 2011), sending the bill over to the Senate where all but two Democrats voted to pass the bill.

We just did a very quick – like 5 minute – review of the data on their spreadsheet and we already found at least three issues just on one bill.

In the HB473 column, the word “RESIGNED” is listed next to Jay Goyal’s name.   Jay Goyal never resigned from the House.  He served his entire term.

Tim DeGeeter, however, HAD resigned three months before the vote.   But he is marked as absent for the vote instead.   DeGeeter was replaced Celebreze.

Senator Jason Wilson is also marked as absent on the HB473 vote when in fact he had taken a job with the Kasich administration and was replaced by Lou Gentile.  Gentile’s vote appears to have been correctly recorded.


To summarize:

  • The Ohio Republican Party put together a spreadsheet full of mistakes, took a screenshot of it and uploaded it to Tumblr – a microblogging site better known for funny cat pictures.
  • Then they held a press conference denouncing Democratic legislators for votes they never made on bills that the Governor has since denounced.
  • During the press conference Bob Bennett,  the leader of the Ohio Republican Party, refused to endorse the budget bill proposed by the Republican Governor while continuing to attack Democrats for not endorsing the  same budget bill.
  • Also during the press conference: Bennett attacked democrats for how they voted in the legislature while also attacking them for not participating in the legislative process.

Hey Chairman Bennett:  You’re doing it wrong.

Here’s a copy of their original spreadsheet so you can compare it to the corrected one they upload after reading this post.  (note all the blanks which are most likely YES votes)