Ohio Republican Party State Central Committee Member Calls on Chair and Treasurer to Resign over Party Finances

An Ohio Republican Party (ORP) central committeeman sent an email to party associates on Monday calling on ORP Chairman Bob Paduchik (pictured above) and Treasurer David Johnson to resign.

Mark Bainbridge, an accountant who represents ORP’s State Central Committee District 16 and who has led the committee’s reform caucus, wrote that the state party has suffered a decline in net worth that is “shrouded in secrecy.” Specifically, he stated, ORP reported a net gain of $147,259 through 2021 when it allegedly should have reported a loss of $162,088. He concluded that $309,347 in net expenses are absent from the organization’s profit and loss statement and that ORP had equity totaling $2,568,530 at the end of 2021 compared with $2,730,618 at the end of 2020. 

“Clearly the numbers have been adjusted so the balance sheet would balance,” Bainbridge wrote. “This is not accurate accounting. Something is quite wrong.”

The state committeeman expressed that he is “at a loss” to grasp what could have caused such a fall in the party’s equity. He also wrote that ORP has forgone audits of its financial statements for “many years” in what he asserts is a contravention of the party’s permanent rules. 

Ohio Republican Party State Central Committee member Mark Bainbridge

Bainbridge recalled calling ORP’s attention to “irregularities” in the group’s 2017 and 2018 financial statements and asking that audits be performed regarding those and subsequent years. As The Ohio Star has reported, Bainbridge cited an internal report by the Virginia-based Rightside Compliance consulting firm concluding that it behooved the party to “rework its books” and align with “generally accepted accounting procedures.” 

The committeeman maintained that “Paduchik has gone to extraordinary lengths to prevent audits from being performed” and that Jane Timken, who chaired the state party prior to Paduchik, tapped the CliftonLarsonAllen firm to perform audits but also wrote that that company worked for Timken’s family business and thus resigned “due to conflict of interests.” 

Bainbridge opined that the faults he finds with the organization’s financial management could compromise outside future political and financial support if they are not addressed.

“What is being covered up at the ORP?” he wrote. “Why has Paduchik not been forthcoming with the financial information requested by [State Central Committee (SCC)] members? What gives Paduchik the right to withhold information from the elected members of the SCC? Why has Paduchik been able to operate with abandon?”

Litigation filed regarding this matter last November by Bainbridge along with GOP committee colleagues Laura Rosenberger, JoAnn Campbell, Joe Miller, and Denise Verdi was dismissed in Franklin County Common Pleas Court. The lawsuit alleged that the five were improperly ejected from party committees on which they had sat in retaliation for demanding audits and taking issue with organizational finances. 

The ORP did not return a call requesting comment. In a statement issued after the lawsuit’s dismissal, Paduchik declared, “For decades, Dave Johnson has been a tireless advocate and volunteer for this party. While the politically motivated attacks against him during this process were abhorrent, Dave remained a true professional who displayed the highest integrity and character. I look forward to continuing to work with him in the service of Republicans across Ohio.”

– – –

Bradley Vasoli is managing editor of The Ohio Star. Follow Brad on Twitter at @BVasoli. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Bob Paduchik” by Bob Paduchik.




Related posts