Ohio State House Representatives Introduce Bills to Revise State Campaign Finance Laws

  Ohio state House Representatives introduced two pieces of legislation Monday that aims to reform state campaign finance laws. These bill proposals come a week after Speaker of the House Larry Householder and four other people were arrested by the FBI. These five men are accused of “worked to corruptly…

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Columbus Statue to Remain on Ohio Statehouse Grounds for Now

A statue of Christopher Columbus will not be removed from the grounds of the Ohio Statehouse until at least 2025, officials said Thursday.

The 9-foot-tall, copper statue of Columbus, in place since 1932, will remain erected in front of the Statehouse in the largest city that bears the explorer’s name until a formal process for removal is undergone by the agency that manages the grounds.

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George Floyd Protests Cause Nearly $158,000 in Ohio Statehouse Damages

  Repairing damage to the Ohio Statehouse and surrounding Capitol Square that occurred during protests against racial injustice will cost about $158,000, according to the board that oversees the property. That tally from protests in Columbus between May 28 and June 18 doesn’t include repairs for damage on other state…

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State Lawmaker Wants to Give Attorney General Power to Prosecute Vandalism on State Property

A state lawmaker has proposed a bill to give the state attorney general the authority to investigate and prosecute vandalism on state property, including the Ohio statehouse.

Republican state lawmakers have expressed their frustration as protesters in downtown Columbus vandalized the Ohio Statehouse in recent weeks. In announcing his proposal, state Rep. Jeff LaRe, R-Violet Township, cited a WBNS-TV report that the Columbus city prosecutor dismissed at least 59 charges stemming from the recent protests.

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Ohio Speaker of the House Threatens to Remove Capitol Square from City of Columbus

Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) announced he is looking into whether the Ohio Capitol can be annexed from the City of Columbus’ city limits as a result of the city not protecting the Capitol from recent protests.

“We’re researching it currently. If Columbus isn’t interested in protecting state property we need to consider removing Cap Square from the City,” he said in an emailed statement.

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Ohio Governor Not in Favor of Removing Columbus Statue

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said Tuesday that while he’s not in favor of the removal of statues of Christopher Columbus, he’s open to discussions that arise about people’s place in history.

DeWine addressed last week’s removal by Columbus State Community College of its statue of the namesake explorer, and the announcement by Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther that he wants the large statue outside City Hall to also go.

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Gov. Mike DeWine Condemns Protest That Vandalized Ohio Statehouse

Gov. Mike DeWine released a statement on Friday showing his displeasure with the recent vandalism at the Ohio Capitol.

“I have spoken with Ohio State Highway Patrol Col. Richard Fambro about security at the Statehouse, and I shared with him my anger and disgust at the vandalism that occurred at the Ohio Statehouse yesterday. I support the right to peacefully protest. However, defacing, damaging, and vandalizing our state capitol and its grounds are wrong, and such actions are criminal,” DeWine said.

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Statehouse Defaced with Red Hand Prints as Protests Continue

Authorities are conducting a criminal investigation after the outside of the Ohio Statehouse was defaced with red hand prints and the phrase “hands up, don’t shoot” in protest of police brutality.

State troopers began to wash off some of the red paint on the western side of the statehouse on Thursday afternoon as a group of people protesting police brutality watched. It’s the latest example of damage to the downtown Columbus icon since protests over the police killing of George Floyd began three weeks ago.

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Ohio Black Caucus Introduces Bill to Declare Racism ‘Public Health Crisis’

The Ohio Legislative Black Caucus announced Friday that it plans to introduce legislation to declare racism a “public health crisis.”

“Our citizens of color have been subjected to the effects of racism since the founding of the State of Ohio in 1803. Since that time, Ohioans of color have endured unequal education, unsafe work conditions, inadequate health care services, subpar housing and an unjust criminal justice system, based on policies that were rooted in a belief that people of color are not worthy of the American Dream,” said a statement from the caucus sent to every member of the Ohio General Assembly.

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Plain Dealer Reporter Calls Out Ohio Legislators for Preventing Local Governments From Regulating Guns While Designating Statehouse as Gun-Free

Three Ohio counties have declared themselves as Second Amendment Sanctuaries, leading one journalist to sarcastically suggest the General Assembly should make the Statehouse a sanctuary too — despite guns being banned from there.

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