Virginia COVID Insights for October 23

The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) reported Friday the following COVID numbers on their Daily Dashboard:

New “reported” cases: 1,180
COVID-confirmed hospitalizations: 702
COVID-pending hospitalizations: 310
COVID-confirmed and -pending intensive care unit (ICU) patients: 233
COVID-confirmed and -pending patients on ventilators: 113
COVID confirmed and probable patients in intensive care units (ICU): 233

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Lance Himes Email Riles Up Ohioans, Many Believe ODH Will Mandate COVID Vaccine

An email from Ohio Department of Health (ODH) Interim Director Lance Himes riled-up Ohioans. The email was sent Tuesday to prospective attendees of an ODH webinar on the state’s vaccine plan. 

In the email, Himes wrote, “It is important to note that the Ohio COVID-19 Vaccination Program strategy is a draft framework outlining how to implement mandatory requirements once more details of a vaccine are known.” 

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DeWine Hits Ohio Circuit Again – Proclaims Red Wave

With just 15 days remaining before the 2020 presidential election, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine was delivering a stump speech on Monday – “there is a red tide going through Ohio.” However, DeWine wasn’t talking about, and stumping for, Republican President Donald J. Trump. Instead, he was campaigning for COVID.

DeWine was referring to the rising case numbers in rural areas and “just about everywhere,” in Ohio – which has led to counties throughout the state reaching code red on Ohio’s public health advisory system.

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Dr. Christine Hoffman of Job Creators Network Discusses Healthcareforyou.com, Voting Safety, and the Irrational Fear of COVID

Monday morning on The John Fredericks Show, host John Fredricks welcomed Dr. Christine Hoffman, M.D. to the show to discuss HealthCareForYou.com, voting safety, and to explain the irrational fear of contracting COVID.

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Governor DeWine Predicts ‘Very, Very Heavy’ COVID Storm

Ohio now has 29 counties colored red by the Ohio Public Health Advisory System, according to remarks made by Ohio Governor Mike DeWine during his press briefing on Thursday.

That total represents 65% of Ohio’s population of just under 11.7 million, according to the Governor.

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CDC Report Indicates Masks May Increase Chance of Infection with COVID or Other Respiratory Illnesses

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report last month in which the nearly 71 percent of individuals infected with COVID-19 reported “always” wearing their mask. This opposed to the 4 percent of infected individuals who “never” wore masks.
The number of individuals infected with COVID-19 positively correlated with the consistency of mask-wearing. The report didn’t address the possible correlation between face mask hygiene and COVID-19 infection, such as proper handling and disposal of masks. It also didn’t differentiate the respondents’ mask types.

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Europe, US Reel as Virus Infections Surge at Record Pace

Coronavirus cases around the world have climbed to all-time highs of more than 330,000 per day as the scourge comes storming back across Europe and spreads with renewed speed in the U.S., forcing many places to reimpose tough restrictions they had eased just a few months ago.

Well after Europe seemed to have largely tamed the virus that proved so lethal last spring, newly confirmed infections are reaching unprecedented levels in Germany, the Czech Republic, Italy and Poland, and most of the rest of the continent is seeing similar danger signs.

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Virginia Proposes to Spend Nearly $121 Million in CARES Funding for COVID Vaccinations, Mentions ‘Vaccine Record Cards’

Virginia plans on spending nearly $121 million on CARES funding for COVID-19 vaccine equipment and advertisement. This according to a proposal draft, reportedly submitted to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last week.

Nearly $6 million will be spent on equipment: over $111 million on administration and staffing and $3 million in a “public education campaign.”

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Ohio’s Advisory System Counts COVID-like ER Visits

This is the sixth story in and eight-part series on the Ohio Public Health Advisory System (OPHAS). The system assigns one of four colors to each of Ohio’s 88 counties based on the level of COVID exposure and spread.

OPHAS is a supplement to the numerous statewide COVID mandates and is supposed to be a data-driven framework that gives local leaders a tool for use in deciding local and county school, business and other public policies.

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Perspective on Ohio Governor DeWine’s Trip Around Ohio to Talk ‘COVID Spread’

Ohio Republican Governor Mike DeWine made his rounds in Ohio on Friday – among other spots, stopping near Toledo and Youngstown to talk about COVID “spread.”

The Ohio Star covered one of the briefings, during which DeWine said if Ohioans don’t mask, distance and follow mandates then schools and colleges will inevitably go remote and businesses will likely shutter because people will be afraid.

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Richland County Is Close to Becoming the First Ohio County to Reach ‘Code Purple’ on Ohio’s Emergency Map

  Richland County is teetering on the verge of becoming the first Ohio county to reach code purple on the Ohio Public Health Advisory System (OPHAS). According to OPHAS,  purple means that the county is experiencing “severe exposure and spread” and residents are to leave home for only “supplies and…

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Robbed: Ohio Department of Health, Governor DeWine Take High School Golfer’s Historic Moment

Lauren Bevins made school history.

The senior golfer was the first female from Eastern High School (Beaver, Ohio) to qualify for the district golf tournament.

On Tuesday morning Bevins would have not only been the first to qualify, she would have been the first to compete.

Lauren never got the chance to pull a club from her golf bag.

The senior golfer was named in a COVID case and contacted by public health officials who told her to quarantine for 14 days. The district golf tournament fell on day 10 of Lauren’s quarantine.

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Gov. Northam Criticizes President Trump’s ‘Don’t Live in Fear’ Message, Suggests Exercising to Help Fight COVID

Governor Ralph Northam criticized President Donald Trump’s statement preceding his release from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
“I will be leaving the great Walter Reed Medical Center today at 6:30 P.M. Feeling really good! Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life. We have developed, under the Trump Administration, some really great drugs & knowledge. I feel better than I did 20 years ago!”

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Stephen K. Bannon: The Recovery of America is Personified in the Recovery of President Donald Trump

Monday morning on The John Fredericks Show, host John Fredricks welcomed political strategist Steve Bannon to the show to weigh in on Trump’s recovery and proceeding with digital rallies supported by excellent surrogates.

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Ohio Public Health Advisory System: Indicator Five – Outpatient Visits for COVID-like Illness

OPHAS has seven indicators and each of Ohio’s 88 counties is assigned a color based on the number of indicators that are triggered.

Indicator five measures the sustained increase in outpatient visits for COVID-like illness.

According to the state website, the indicator “provides information on the health care seeking behavior of the population and a sense of how concerned residents are about their current health status and the virus.”

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Congressman Rob Wittman Talks About His Newport News Reception, the Campaign, and the President’s Recent Positive Coronavirus Test Result

Friday morning on The John Fredericks Show, host Fredericks welcomed Virginia’s First District Rep. Rob Wittman to the show to discuss his big endorsement by Trump and Pence at the Newport News rally and the president’s COVID positive test results.

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DeWine Says Restrictions for Years, Then Backpedals as Ohio Reports Limited and Late Antibody Study

During the twice-weekly COVID presser, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine invited Dr. Abigail Norris-Turner on Thursday to speak to Ohioans. Norris-Turner revealed the results of a random statewide antibody study former Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton mentioned in April and promised May 11.

Regarding the 1,200-person study, Acton said during a press conference on May 11 “[t]hey’re volunteering to help us learn more about the prevalence of this disease, many of whom may not know they have had it.”

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Nashville Based Attorney Kirk Clements Representing Steve Smith Discusses the Case Against Mayor Cooper and Metro Health Officials

Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Nashville-based attorney Kirk Clements who is handling the lawsuit against Mayor Cooper to highlight the details of the case formed by Lower Broadway restaurant and bar owners.

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Gov. DeWine Announces National Guard at Presidential Debates, COVID, Sports

Governor DeWine’s office sent out an email update on Thursday about COVID, the upcoming presidential debate and sporting events.

In COVID news, 67 counties remained in their current state of exposure while Portage County dropped from level 3 to level 2.

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State Rep. Grendell’s ‘Restore Ohio Now’ Bill Gains Momentum in Ohio House, Needs Speaker’s Guidance

Nineteen state representatives signed on to support law that would effectively put an end to COVID restrictions, the bill’s author, State Representative Diane Grendell (R-Chesterland) told The Ohio Star Wednesday.

“Government cannot protect us from every single one of life’s risks,” Grendell said.

The Star reported that the Representative-crafted a bill that would immediately cancel Governor Mike DeWine’s Executive Order declaring a state of emergency in Ohio.

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Gov. DeWine Discusses Ohio COVID Updates

Governor Mike DeWine discussed programs Wednesday aimed at helping Ohio deal with COVID.

In an emailed press release, DeWine’s office announced the creation of a new demographic dashboard which will allow those interested to break down COVID cases by race and ethnicity, as well as age and county. DeWine said the “dashboard will help better track health inequities and disparities” and that “this data will also help put critical decisions into context for policymakers.”

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Steve Cortes Discusses Positive Virus Trends, the Economy, and How Trump Can Win Big in November

Wednesday morning on The John Fredericks Show, host John Fredericks welcomed Senior Advisor to Trump-Pence 2020 who discussed positive coronavirus news and how the economy responds to that as well as Trump flipping states that he previously did not in 2016.

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Governor DeWine’s Comments on Nursing Home Visitation Spark Questions

Ohio Department of Health Interim Director Lance Himes signed an order on July 2 that went into effect on July 20. The mandate permits outdoor visitations at senior homes around the state and prohibits indoor visits.

“If you have a loved one and you cannot get into a nursing home, that is the nursing home that is stopping you from going in – it is not the health department” said Ohio Governor Mike DeWine on September 17 during a semiweekly COVID press conference.

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Mayor John Cooper Claims Nashville Bar and Restaurant Owners ‘Have Been Playing with Matches in a Barn . . . Complaining About Taking Their Matches Away’

Mayor John Cooper today saying it’s fake news that Nashville is hiding information about its COVID clusters in bars.

Did Nashville’s mayor deliberately overstate the number of coveted cases tied to Nashville bars when he shut them down July 2nd?

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Nashville Mayor John Cooper on July 2: ‘Our Public Health Investigators Have Found a Record Number of Clusters Originating from Bars within the Past Week’

Here are Nashville Mayor John Cooper’s exact words, delivered at his July 2, 2020 press conference, beginning at 3:01 mark in the video of that press conference.

It’s worth noting the Nashville rate of confirmed cases did decline while bars and restaurants operated at 50 percent capacity in May. The Metro Parks facilities opened in phase three will remain open including dog parks, skate parks, basketball courts, and playgrounds. And recreational leagues and pools will still be permitted as outbreaks have not been traced back to these venues or activities.

Now, of course, we urge you to practice safe social distancing around swimming pools this weekend. Additionally, all bars in Davidson County known as limited-service restaurants that derive the majority of their revenue from alcohol sales will close for a minimum of 14 days beginning tomorrow which is equal to one incubation cycle of the coronavirus.

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Gov. DeWine Did a Number of Things to Address COVID-19 This Week

Governor Mike DeWine’s office released a review of the state’s COVID-19 status and response as well as a list of actions taken by the state.

The governor updated this week’s coronavirus numbers, which saw 69 counties remain at their current level of exposure, and Preble County being downgraded from a level 3 to a level 2. In other COVID-19 news, the state has it’s own dashboard for COVID tracking of children and schools in conjunction with the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association and local health departments.

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Crom Carmichael: ‘The Cronyism of the Political Class in Nashville Has Taken Advantage of the Taxpayers’

Friday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed the original all-star panelist Crom Carmichael to the studio to discuss the cronyism that resides in Nashville.

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Rob Wittman Discusses the Dragging Feet of Congress and the Mechanics of Operation Warp Speed

Friday morning on The John Fredericks Show, host Fredericks welcomed the U.S. Representative of Virginia’s First District to the show to discuss how Congress is dragging its feet on appropriations bills and the details of a coronavirus vaccine.

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UMN Football Back in Play After Big Ten Rescinds Month-Old Decision to Cancel Fall Season

University of Minnesota (UMN) fall football is back in play after The Big Ten rescinded its decision to postpone the season until spring.

The Big Ten Conference canceled fall sports last month “due to ongoing health and safety concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.” The announcement caused widespread backlash within the football community.

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Minnesota Department of Health: Even Kids Who Test Negative Must Quarantine If Exposed

Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) stated Monday in a press release that even children who test negative for the coronavirus must quarantine if exposed. The MDH’s “COVID-19 Attendance Guide for Parents and Families” explains these standards.

“Getting tested does not shorten the time that they must stay home. Your child must stay home for 14 days (quarantine) from the last contact they had with the person who tested positive for COVID-19, even if the child tests negative,” states the guide.

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Ohio Representative Diane Grendell Drafts Bill to End COVID Emergency in Ohio with ‘Restore Ohio Now’

Ohio State Representative Diane Grendell (R-Chesterland) announced Wednesday the introduction of a bill to “terminate the COVID-19 state of emergency in Ohio.”

The representative lauded Governor Mike DeWine for his swift response to COVID saying that he “responded appropriately.” However, Grendell said the administration “continues to use the state of emergency to restrict businesses and all Ohioans.”

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Federal Judge Calls Pennsylvania Gov’s Orders Illegal, Ohio Gov DeWine Defends His Own Orders at Press Conference

Tuesday, a federal court in Pennsylvania issued a declaratory judgement, citing violations of the U.S. Constitution to strike down Democratic Governor Tom Wolf’s authority to close businesses, issue stay-at-home orders and limit gatherings.

Although the decision is not binding in Ohio it sets precedent that other judges may reference.

Gyms, restaurants, sports businesses, water parks and dance studios are some of the businesses that have filed lawsuits against the Ohio Department of Health and Governor Mike DeWine.

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Healthcare Activist Says Patients Aren’t Being Allowed Crucial Visitors

A nurse turned medical activist is accusing an Ohio Healthcare Provider of refusing to help her husband after she complained about the Hospital’s visitor policies.

Michelle Estel, says that she received a letter from Fairfield Medical Center (FMC), where her husband was receiving chemotherapy for his lymphoma stating that the hospital could no longer provide care to him since the relationship between he and the hospital was “no longer effective.” 

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Freedom of Information Applies to Only the Educated, Say Ohio Wesleyan Professors

Delaware, Ohio City Council met Monday, September 14 at 7:00 p.m. to consider a resolution requesting past-due information from the Ohio Department of Health.

Resolution 20-53 requests the total number of tests administered in the city, as well as the total number of tests in the county to be released to the Delaware General Health District from the Ohio Department of Health.

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Mainstream Media Declares Ohio Star Reports Rumors, Gov. Office Says Not So Fast

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s Press Secretary Dan Tierney clarified the governor’s remarks made on September 8 regarding internet rumors about Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) camps and kids being pulled from home to stay overnight at school being “garbage.”

Tierney said in an interview with The Ohio Star that messages the governor received over the weekend preceding the Tuesday press briefing came from concerned Ohioans who were commenting on a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) infographic that showed up on social media over the weekend.

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Ohio State University and Other Colleges Crack Down to Prevent COVID Spread Even as Hospitalizations Remain Low

Universities across the country are taking more and more aggressive steps to prevent the spread of COVID.

The moves come as positive cases on university campuses have increased, though false positives remain an issue and some reports show that the number of COVID related hospitalizations at many major institutions remains at 0.

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Governor DeWine Insists Evidence Overwhelming on Masks for ALL K-12 but Ohio Pediatrician Iffy and White House Medical Advisor Disagrees

On Tuesday during a press conference to address Ohioans on COVID updates in the state, Governor Mike DeWine was asked about conflicting expert opinions on masking children – which he requires for K-12.

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Sunday COVID Numbers Show Downward Trends

Ohio’s COVID numbers were updated yesterday, revealing a downward trend across the major COVID indicators.

778 cases of COVID were reported Sunday, which is well below the 21 day reported average of 1061 cases. Deaths and hospitalizations are also down, with a drop from an average of 21 to 17 deaths yesterday, and 29 fewer people being hospitalized than the average of 75. 

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Governor DeWine: Punts Real Issue, Hands-Off 6,000-Fan Variance to Browns and Bengals, Continues to Penalize Ohio

  Governor Mike DeWine announced on Saturday his grant of a spectator variance for the Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals. Both NFL clubs received exceptions to the current state order limiting spectators to the lesser of 1,500 people or 15 percent of the fixed, seated capacity. The variance allows 1,500…

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Sen. Gazelka Challenges Gov. Walz on COVID Measures and Meetings: ‘There is No Longer an Emergency’

Senator Paul Gazelka (R-Nisswa) continues to challenge Governor Tim Walz’s emergency executive powers, even after their private meeting Thursday. The two disagree about the necessity of Minnesota’s continued state of emergency.

Their meeting marked the 175th day of Walz’s orders.

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Ohio FEMA Camps – Still More Questions Than Answers

The Ohio Star reported on September 3 that Ohio Department of Health (ODH) Interim Director Lance Himes released an order on August 31 – an order creating Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) shelters and legalizing their use for people who “are unable to safely self-quarantine in their place of residence and to isolate those diagnosed with or showing symptoms of COVID-19.”

The non-congregate FEMA sheltering will be utilized throughout the state for people, according to the examples given by Himes, who “test positive for COVID-19 who do not require hospitalization but need isolation (including those exiting from hospitals); those who have been exposed to COVID-19 who do not require hospitalization; and asymptomatic high-risk individuals needing social distancing as a precautionary measure.”

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Governor DeWine’s Tuesday Press Briefing Addresses Labor Day Weekend Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic, High-Speed Internet Grants for Students

Governor Mike DeWine’s recent press conference touched on a number of issues facing Ohio and possible fixes. 

In the Tuesday briefing, DeWine reminded citizens to take the proper safety precautions for Labor Day weekend. DeWine reported that Ohio had the “highest number of new cases since the end of July,” which he called a “stark reminder that this virus has not gone away and it continues to spread in our communities.”

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New CDC Admission Could Slash Ohio’s Death Toll

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Weekly Index disclosed “[F]or 6% of deaths, COVID-19 was the only cause mentioned.”

That means of the 183,000 U.S. deaths attributed to COVID as of the release of this article that 10,980 people died from COVID.  The remaining 172,000-plus deaths occurred with COVID.

In a text exchange with Dan Tierney, Press Secretary for Governor Mike DeWine, The Ohio Star asked Tierney if Ohio distinguishes “between someone who dies from the virus and someone who dies with the virus.”

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Virginia House Delegates Member Glenn Davis Weighs in on New Zoom Meeting Process for House Meetings and the Continued Closing of Virginia Beach

Monday morning on The John Fredericks Show, host John Fredericks was joined by the Virginia House of Delegates 84th District member Glenn Davis who commented on the inefficiency of the Zoom meetings for the House of Delegates and the inability for businesses to open up in Virginia Beach.

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Two Days After Co-Sponsoring Impeachment, Ohio Representative Becomes Target of Investigation

On Monday morning, Representative Nino Vitale (R-Urbana) began the week with a bang – he announced on Facebook the release and his co-sponsorship of articles of impeachment levied against Republican Governor Mike DeWine.

Vitale and three other representatives co-sponsored the articles that outlined 10 offenses the foursome listed as reasons for DeWine to be removed from the state’s top post.

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Governor DeWine Still Not Disclosing All Details on Partners in Health

During a Tuesday COVID press conference Ohio Republican Governor Mike DeWine was asked by WMFD-TV:

“Governor, Five Texas Republicans sued Texas Republican Governor Abbott over a $295 million contact tracing deal signed during the early months of Coronavirus pandemic. Legislators say the Governor skirted separation of powers , agreeing to a contract without following state statutes.

As you know, I’ve been waiting for months now for information on our contract with the company assisting Ohio with contact tracing – Partners in Health. I have to assume that is a multimillion dollar contract and our audience is interested in understanding the length and value of the deal.

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Ohio Speaker Bob Cupp Faces First Test of Legislative Priority with Articles of Impeachment

Speaker of the House Bob Cupp (R-Lima) was voted into the Speaker role by the Republican Caucus.

The Speaker seat was open after former Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) was relieved of his role following an FBI criminal complaint.

Before Speaker Cupp ascended to the top role in the House, he had to battle Representative Jim Butler (R-Dayton) for the spot.

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BREAKING: Ohio Lawmakers File Articles of Impeachment Against Governor Mike DeWine

On the morning of Monday August 24, members of the Ohio House of Representatives released the draft of their articles of impeachment exhibiting charges levied against Ohio Governor Mike DeWine (R).

Representatives supporting the filing are John Becker (R-Union Township, Clermont County), Nino Vitale (R-Urbana), Candice Keller (R-Middletown), and Paul Zeltwanger (R-Mason).

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