May 10, 2018
More than 1.6 million Ohioans went to the polls for the May 8 Primary Election, in addition to weighing in on local issues and selecting their party's candidates for the General Election, they overwhelmingly passed State Issue 1, a redistricting reform initiative supported by both parties. Though there are still absentee and provisional ballots to count, State Issue 1 passed with 75 percent of the vote.
In the statewide elections, as expected, Republicans Mike DeWine and Jon Husted will face off against Democrats Richard Cordray and Betty Sutton for the Governor's office. Constance Gadell-Newton and Brett Joseph are the candidates representing the Green Party. Ohio politicos will remember this is a rematch as DeWine and Cordray battled for Attorney General in 2010, with DeWine taking the prize.
State Representative Robert Sprague bested Sandra O'Brien to earn the Republican nomination for Treasurer of State. He will face Democrat Rob Richardson in the General Election. All other statewide candidates ran unopposed.
Attorneys on the ballot
No matter which way the political tides turn, the next Governor of Ohio will be an attorney. Same goes for Attorney General, Auditor of State, and of course the two justices of the Ohio Supreme Court. In addition, Kathleen Clyde, the Democratic candidate for Secretary of State and Rob Richardson, the Democratic candidate for Treasurer of State, are attorneys. And for the Ohio House and Senate, there are more than 37 candidates who can boast a JD as a credential. This includes former Toledo Mayor Paula Hicks Hudson — a member of the OSBA Board of Governors — who yesterday won her primary to be the Democratic nominee for the Ohio House District 44. Congrats, Paula!
We may be biased, but we think attorneys are outstanding leaders in their communities and tend to make great public servants. We are pleased to see so many putting their names on the ballot to make Ohio better.
With the Primary Election behind them, legislators return to the Statehouse next week when all eyes will be on the Ohio House leadership election for Speaker. Representatives Ryan Smith (R-Bidwell) and Larry Householder (R-Glenford) had been in a battle royale to be the next Speaker long before the job surprisingly opened up early due to the resignation of former Speaker Cliff Rosenberger, who is reportedly the subject of an FBI investigation. The winner next week will be Speaker for the remainder of the current session, though there has been some talk of House republicans picking an interim speaker who is neither Smith nor Householder. There will be another vote before the new House members take their seats in a brand new legislative session starting in January. Both Speaker candidates were active in the House primary elections, backing candidates who will back them for leadership. Householder reportedly got a boost from the primary results, his candidates faring better in a dozen contested races; however, Smith claims to have the support he needs to be elected next week and in the next session. We'll be sure to report back next week.
The House Speaker election is slated for Tuesday, May 15, with a full session scheduled for the 16th. The Ohio Senate is also scheduled to be in session on the 16th.
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