Dayton Daily News: INVESTIGATION: JOBSOHIO Board has ties to firms that got help

INVESTIGATION: JOBSOHIO

Board has ties to firms that got help

JobsOhio says assistance came before JobsOhio began operating in July 2011.

Posted: 12:05 a.m. Wednesday, July 31, 2013

BY LAURA A. BISCHOFF - COLUMBUS BUREAU

Columbus —

Six of nine members of the JobsOhio board of directors have direct financial ties to companies that have received tax credits and other assistance from state government or JobsOhio since Gov. John Kasich took office in 2011, public records show.

The directors are employed by, sit on the board of or hold stock in companies that have received assistance from either the state of Ohio or JobsOhio, the newly created non-profit established by the Kasich’s administration. JobsOhio also assisted two subsidiaries of Worthington Industries, a Columbus-based company that has contributed heavily to Kasich and where he served as a director between 2001 and 2010.

JobsOhio spokeswoman Laura Jones said the state assistance to the companies came before JobsOhio began operating in July 2011. Still, JobsOhio documents list some of these companies as getting assistance from the non-profit.

“We have a conflict of interest policy that we have in place that we utilize here at JobsOhio,” Jones said. “If there is a conflict, it’ll be brought to the attention (of the full board) and policy will be followed on how to go forward with that.”

Progress Ohio Executive Director Brian Rothenberg, a frequent critic of JobsOhio, said better transparency would result in more taxpayer protections.

“This smacks of self-dealing in a country club atmosphere of doling out the public’s money,” he said.

Until Kasich took office, the Ohio Department of Development managed the state’s economic development and job creation efforts. Kasich argued that the state needed to be more nimble and rely on experts with business experience to get better results.

With cooperation from the General Assembly, he replaced the department with the Development Services Agency, created JobsOhio and funded the new non-profit with bond proceeds, state money and private donations. Eight of the board members are appointed by Kasich; the board then appointed the chief investment officer, John Minor, who is the ninth director.

JobsOhio is in charge of marketing the state as a good place to do business and helping arrange loans, grants and tax breaks for companies creating jobs. JobsOhio said in its 2012 annual report that JobsOhio and its partners helped 277 companies that committed to creating or retaining 75,612 jobs and invest $5.8 billion in the state. The group is exempt from state audits, public records laws and some ethics laws.

Matt Mayer, president of Opportunity Ohio, a conservative think tank, said government assistance going to businesses connected to JobsOhio directors “smells badly and it smacks of corporate cronyism.”

“This is why in some cases economic development entities are not private or quasi-private,” he said, arguing that public entities have more transparency.

Jones said the JobsOhio board, although “very engaged,” does not weigh in on what incentive packages companies should get. Instead, JobsOhio managers make recommendations on business tax breaks to the state Development Services Agency. The DSA considers the recommendations and goes through a public approval process, she said.

But a spokesman for the Democratic Party said the process provides too little public scrutiny.

“Those who have worried from the outset that the JobsOhio model invites scandal have been vindicated today,” said Matt McGrath, Ohio Democratic Party spokesman.

Close ties

Although JobsOhio is a private entity, it has close ties with state government: many of its employees used to work for the state; it has a contract with the state Development Services Agency to negotiate incentive packages; and Kasich is its biggest supporter. JobsOhio’s 58-page 2012 annual report mentions Kasich’s 11 times and displays five photos of him.

JobsOhio helped line up tax credits for two subsidiaries of Worthington Industries, a steel-processing company that paid Kasich more than $600,000 in director fees between 2001 and 2010. Kasich’s state ethics disclosures also indicate he received a deferred compensation payout from the company in 2012.

Employees and managers of Worthington Industries have been supporters of the Ohio GOP and Kasich’s political career, contributing more than $62,000 to the Kasich-Taylor campaign committee – including $10,000 from Chief Executive John McConnell just a week after a Worthington Industries subsidiary, Artiflex Manufacturing, received approval for a $109,863 state tax break. McConnell and his now late father contributed $512,000 to the Ohio Republican Party between 2004 and 2012, state records show.

Kasich spokesman Rob Nichols said Kasich had divested himself of Worthington Industries before taking office, but delayed paperwork resulted in the last deferred compensation payment coming in 2012.

READ MORE

MEMO: John Kasich’s July to Forget

COLUMBUS, OH—July has been cruel to John Kasich: he signed a budget panned by observers in every corner of the state, for myriad reasons; his ‘Ohio Miracle’ rhetoric was exposed by a dismal jobs report; and JobsOhio continued to draw criticism for its lack of transparency, not to mention its apparent ineffectiveness. Ohioans aren’t surprised – this month looks like a lot of months with John Kasich in charge – but it was inconvenient for the Governor: it comes just as he has started dipping his toe into the 2016 Presidential waters (best evidenced in a flattering profile in POLITICO).

Ohio Democratic Party adviser Matt McGrath issued a memo regarding Governor Kasich’s bad month, writing: “What Ohioans have come to know about John Kasich – he’s an out-of-touch, extreme conservative who puts the interests of the wealthy and well-connected ahead of everyone else – has been perfectly encapsulated during his July to forget.”

Read the full memo below, or access it HERE:

MEMORANDUM 

TO: Interested Parties

FROM: Matt McGrath, ODP Adviser

DATE: July 24, 2013

Re: John Kasich’s Awful Month

Barely three weeks ago John Kasich deflected but did not deny interest in a 2016 Presidential run in a flattering POLITICO piece (primarily sourced by John Kasich). Kasich’s White House ambitions have never been a secret, nor were they much dampened after his brief run in 2000. “If I can fix my fund-raising problems, I will run again,” he said in a 2001interview. His solution: lucrative, network-building stints at Fox News and Lehman Brothers – not to mention the relationships he’s cultivating through the increasingly opaque practices of JobsOhio.

But just as Kasich turns a longing gaze toward Washington, D.C., the challenges of his day job seem to have gotten the best of him. Or perhaps he jinxed himself. Either way, July has been a brutal month full of self-inflicted wounds for the one-time (and possibly future) Presidential also-ran:

1) The Re-Election Budget Reviews Are In, and They Are BRUTAL

Across Ohio, newspaper editorials and columnists have panned Kasich’s budget, noting that it shifts the tax burden onto middle-class families, shortchanges schools and public safety, and represents an unprecedented attack on women’s healthcare and reproductive rights. The state’s largest newspaper called the budget ‘dismal’ and ‘unworthy of a governor intent on reelection.’ Below, a mere sampling of the savage response:

Cleveland Plain Dealer: A dismal document… that puts the needs of the well-off ahead of those of Ohio’s poorest and middle-class citizens….Overall, this is a budget unworthy of boasting – or of a governor intent on re-election. It is a plan to be endured, not embraced. [Cleveland Plain Dealer, 6/29/13]

Cincinnati Enquirer: “Laden with stuff that has nothing to do with the budget…inflame(s) the culture wars anew with a series of restrictions on abortion. The most egregious is a last-minute amendment to require doctors to perform ultrasounds to detect a fetal heartbeat. This is a back-door effort to avoid public debate on a highly controversial issue. [Cincinnati Enquirer, 6/27/13]

An Enquirer analysis of the new tax cut – pitched as a big boost for Ohio’s small businesses – finds that most will save just a few hundred dollars a year. [Cincinnati Enquirer, 7/7/13]

Toledo Blade: Throws Ohio in reverse…Gov. John Kasich and the Republican-controlled General Assembly couldn’t be any clearer about where they and their party are taking this state. Ohioans who don’t want to be dragged along for the ride — folks who aren’t rich, women, and anyone else who would rather move forward than backward — need to insist on a different route. [Toledo Blade, 7/7/13]

Like explosives-sniffing dogs in a minefield, experts who analyze Ohio’s new budget are finding destructive devices nearly everywhere they search. [Toledo Blade, 7/21/13]

Akron Beacon Journal: [Kasich’s small business tax cuts] not exactly an amount that leads to additional hiring… The tax system still will require more of those in greater need. [The Akron Beacon Journal, 7/15/13]

WBNS-TV 10: [Paul Beck, OSU professor]: Expert: the tax cut is going to be minimal… Ohioans will barely see it…And they will face every time they buy something a somewhat higher sales tax…The Kasich plan is unbalanced because the sales tax is regressive. [10TV.com, 7/2/13]

Columbus Dispatch: Tax plan unpopular in schools…Associations representing superintendents, treasurers and school boards said they don’t like the proposal, arguing that it will make it more difficult to pass levies because they will cost taxpayers more. [Columbus Dispatch, 6/22/13]

Newark Advocate: GOP budget likely means higher local taxes…hypocritical. [Newark Advocate, 7/21/13]

Youngstown Vindicator: Ohio’s intrusion into personal health care decisions — aimed exclusively at women and organizations such as Planned Parenthood that serve them — serves the narrow political interests of Kasich and the Legislature, not the people of the state.[Youngstown Vindicator, 7/3/13]

2) A Picture Worth a Thousand Words, and an Agenda That Harms Thousands of Ohio Women

From the signing ceremony that made Governor Kasich’s widely-panned budget official, this photo of Kasich and his all-male budget team went viral:

 signing

Photo credit: Karen Kasler

As bad – and tone deaf – as this image is, the content of the budget itself is a disaster for Ohio women: defunding Planned Parenthood, imposing a ‘gag rule’ on rape crisis centers, mandating medically unnecessary ultrasounds for women considering an abortion, and creating new red tape that threatens to close women’s health clinics all over the state.

3) Move over, Mitt Romney …there’s a new Mr. 47%

The previously underappreciated number 47 earned a distinguished place during the 2012 election, thanks to Mitt Romney. Of course, long before Governor Romney was caught on camera dismissing 47 percent of his fellow Americans as takers and layabouts at a closed-door fundraiser, he had another inopportune connection to that number: under his watch Massachusetts ranked 47th in job creation – a fact that was always hard for Romney to square with his ‘I know how to create jobs’ rhetoric.

Fast forward to July, 2013, and John Kasich’s faltering jobs record. Last month, Ohio lost more jobs than every other state but one. In March, it lost the most jobs in the country. Individual monthly reports have been up and down, but the long-term trend is unmistakable: over the last year, Ohio ranks… 47th in job creation.

Meanwhile, the United States has added jobs for 40 consecutive months.

4) Ethics for Thee, But Not For Me

Last week, two different government accountability watchdog groups found Governor Kasich’s ethical record wanting – and getting worse. Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) listed Kasich among its list of the “Worst Governors in America,” citing JobsOhio and saying “Kasich will do whatever it takes to keep the public in the dark about the non-profit he created, and played partisan politics with his state’s voting laws.” Also last week, the nonprofit Better Government Association ranked Ohio 40th in its “Integrity Index,” a measure of a state’s willingness to enable its citizens ‘to fight corruption by attending public meetings, reviewing government documents and raising questions without fear of retribution.”

Meanwhile, JobsOhio was named a finalist last month for the Golden Padlock Award, given out by Investigative Reporters and Editors’ Transparency Watch. Clearly when it comes to ethics, transparency, and accountability, Governor Kasich believes less is more.

***

In the June POLITCO profile, Kasich’s main attributes were described as “competence, consistency and actually creating jobs rather than just talking about it.” You could almost hear the Governor ticking off those items as part of his own self-assessment – although we doubt even he would be so bold as to declare himself “disciplined on the stump,” the most eyebrow-raising assertion in an article full of them.

Regardless, it’s a good story – particularly given how unpopular Washington Republicans are – and Kasich’s self-mythology is understandable. The only problem, as seen above, is that it’s not true.

What Ohioans have come to know about John Kasich – he’s an out-of-touch, extreme conservative who puts the interests of the wealthy and well-connected ahead of everyone else – has been perfectly encapsulated during his July to forget.

###

 

UPDATED: Will Gov. Kasich Call for Resignation of Indicted Republican State Rep. Beck?

Rep. Pete Beck (R-Mason) Indicted on 16 Counts Including Fraud, Theft

COLUMBUS, OHIO- Today, State Representative Pete Beck, a Republican from Mason, was indicted on 16 counts of felonious criminal charges, including crimes of fraud and theft. These charges follow a civil lawsuit, and allegations that Beck may have illegally misappropriated tens of thousands of dollars for his campaign accounts.

“These charges against Rep. Beck do more than taint just him, they harm the public’s trust in all of state government,” said Ohio Democratic Chairman and State Representative Chris Redfern.

Recently, legislators of both parties have faced criminal charges. In the fall of 2012, Redfern joined Republicans in calling for the resignation of Democratic Rep. Clayton Luckie who faced numerous felony charges.

While Republicans – like Speaker Batchelder and former ORP Chairman Bennett – jumped to call for the resignation of previous Democratic officeholders facing indictment, they have been surprisingly quiet regarding the criminal investigations trailing Rep. Beck and news concerning this indictment.

“Following this indictment, I’m certainly curious whether Governor Kasich will take the same approach other Republicans have in the past and call for Rep. Beck’s immediate resignation,” noted Redfern.

peter_beck

 

BACKGROUND

Rep. Pete Beck Faces Civil, Criminal Investigations

January 2013: Beck Was Subject To An Investigation By The Ohio House Ethics Committee; Investigation Was Prompted By A Lawsuit Alleging Beck Participated In $1.2 Million Fraud.  According to The Cincinnati Enquirer ,”Sworn in to his third term Monday, state Rep. Peter Beck now faces an ethics investigation by the Ohio House because of a civil lawsuit alleging he participated in a fraud that cheated investors out of more than $1.2 million.” [The Cincinnati Enquirer, 1/8/13]

Civil Suit Alleged That Beck Participated In $1.2 Million Fraud; Beck Was Alleged To Have Helped Produce Fraudulent Accounting Statements Through His Accounting Firm.  According to The Cincinnati Enquirer “This is not the first time in court for some of the key players in a lawsuit alleging that state Rep. Peter Beck and others defrauded investors out of more than $1.2 million. … B.eck, a Mason Republican now in his third term in a district that includes parts of Warren and Butler counties, also faces an ethics investigation by the Ohio House over the recent lawsuit.  … In the lawsuit, Hodges alleges that Beck solicited investments and sold ownership shares for Christopher Technologies, a start-up software company where he served as chief financial officer. Among other things, Beck helped produce financial statements showing that both Christopher and TML ‘were sound and in good standing,’ when in fact the opposite was true, the suit says.” [The Cincinnati Enquirer, 1/11/13]

July 2013: Peter Beck Was Expected To Face Multiple Felony Charges Related To Securities Fraud. .According to The Columbus Dispatch “State Rep. Peter Beck is expected to face multiple felony charges today related to securities fraud. Multiple Dispatch sources confirmed that a Hamilton County grand jury is expected to hand up indictments against Beck, 60, a certified public accountant from Mason who was appointed to the House in September 2009 and won election twice since then. ” [The Columbus Dispatch, 6/18/13]

Calls For Clayton Luckie To Step Down.

October 2012: After Rep. Clayton Luckie Was Indicted, Chairman Redfern Called On Luckie To Step Down. According to Dayton Daily News, “The investigation that resulted in Wednesday’s shocking 49-count criminal indictment against Rep. Clayton Luckie started with one $300 campaign donation in 2010 that was improperly omitted from the Dayton Democrat’s finance reports…  The Democratic caucus did begin stripping Luckie of his committee assignments, including his spot on the powerful Controlling Board that approves multi-million dollar state contracts. ‘I think it would be wise for Rep. Luckie to step away from public service and resign his position so he can focus on the challenges ahead,’ said Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern. ” [Dayton Daily News, 10/10/12]

ORP Chairman Bob Bennett Called On Luckie To Resign. According to WDTN “The chairman of the Ohio Republican Party says Democrat State Representative Clayton Luckie should step down.  In a statement released Nov. 21, 2012, Bob Bennett called on leaders in the Ohio Democratic Party to force Luckie to resign. ” [WDTN, 11/21/12]

Speaker Batschelder Said That Luckie Damaged The Public’s Trust In The House, Said Luckie Should Resign. According to The Associated Press “-The Ohio House speaker is calling on a state lawmaker to resign in the wake of a 49-count indictment that accuses him of skimming nearly $130,000 in campaign funds for his personal use and failing to list campaign expenditures for six years. Speaker William Batchelder said Wednesday that Rep. Clayton Luckie has damaged the public’s trust in the House and should resign. Batchelder, a Republican, says it’s in ‘the best interest’ of the Legislature and the people of Ohio that Luckie leave office.” [The Associated Press, 10/10/12]

Will Gov. Kasich Call for Resignation of Republican State Rep. Facing Potential Felonious Criminal Charges?

Rep. Pete Beck (R-Mason) Expected to be Indicted on Multiple Counts of Securities Fraud

COLUMBUS, OHIO- Today, as reported by the Columbus Dispatch, State Representative Pete Beck, a Republican from Mason, is expected to be indicted on felonious criminal charges, including securities fraud. These charges follow a civil lawsuit, and allegations that Beck may have illegally misappropriated tens of thousands of dollars for his campaign accounts.

“Even the allegation of these types of charges against Rep. Beck harms the public’s trust in state government,” said Ohio Democratic Chairman and State Representative Chris Redfern.

Recently, legislators of both parties faced criminal charges. In the fall of 2012, Redfern joined Republicans in calling for the resignation of Democratic Rep. Clayton Luckie who faced numerous felony charges.

While Republicans – like Speaker Batchelder and former ORP Chairman Bennett – jumped to call for the resignation of previous Democratic officeholders facing indictment, they have been surprisingly quiet regarding the criminal investigations trailing Rep. Beck and news concerning a potential indictment.

“With this potential indictment, I’m certainly curious whether Governor Kasich will take the same approach other Republicans have in the past and call for Rep. Beck’s immediate resignation,” noted Redfern.

 

BACKGROUND

Rep. Pete Beck Faces Civil, Criminal Investigations

January 2013: Beck Was Subject To An Investigation By The Ohio House Ethics Committee; Investigation Was Prompted By A Lawsuit Alleging Beck Participated In $1.2 Million Fraud.  According to The Cincinnati Enquirer ,”Sworn in to his third term Monday, state Rep. Peter Beck now faces an ethics investigation by the Ohio House because of a civil lawsuit alleging he participated in a fraud that cheated investors out of more than $1.2 million.” [The Cincinnati Enquirer, 1/8/13]

Civil Suit Alleged That Beck Participated In $1.2 Million Fraud; Beck Was Alleged To Have Helped Produce Fraudulent Accounting Statements Through His Accounting Firm.  According to The Cincinnati Enquirer “This is not the first time in court for some of the key players in a lawsuit alleging that state Rep. Peter Beck and others defrauded investors out of more than $1.2 million. … B.eck, a Mason Republican now in his third term in a district that includes parts of Warren and Butler counties, also faces an ethics investigation by the Ohio House over the recent lawsuit.  … In the lawsuit, Hodges alleges that Beck solicited investments and sold ownership shares for Christopher Technologies, a start-up software company where he served as chief financial officer. Among other things, Beck helped produce financial statements showing that both Christopher and TML ‘were sound and in good standing,’ when in fact the opposite was true, the suit says.” [The Cincinnati Enquirer, 1/11/13]

July 2013: Peter Beck Was Expected To Face Multiple Felony Charges Related To Securities Fraud. .According to The Columbus Dispatch “State Rep. Peter Beck is expected to face multiple felony charges today related to securities fraud. Multiple Dispatch sources confirmed that a Hamilton County grand jury is expected to hand up indictments against Beck, 60, a certified public accountant from Mason who was appointed to the House in September 2009 and won election twice since then. ” [The Columbus Dispatch, 6/18/13]

Calls For Clayton Luckie To Step Down.

October 2012: After Rep. Clayton Luckie Was Indicted, Chairman Redfern Called On Luckie To Step Down. According to Dayton Daily News, “The investigation that resulted in Wednesday’s shocking 49-count criminal indictment against Rep. Clayton Luckie started with one $300 campaign donation in 2010 that was improperly omitted from the Dayton Democrat’s finance reports…  The Democratic caucus did begin stripping Luckie of his committee assignments, including his spot on the powerful Controlling Board that approves multi-million dollar state contracts. ‘I think it would be wise for Rep. Luckie to step away from public service and resign his position so he can focus on the challenges ahead,’ said Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern. ” [Dayton Daily News, 10/10/12]

ORP Chairman Bob Bennett Called On Luckie To Resign. According to WDTN “The chairman of the Ohio Republican Party says Democrat State Representative Clayton Luckie should step down.  In a statement released Nov. 21, 2012, Bob Bennett called on leaders in the Ohio Democratic Party to force Luckie to resign. ” [WDTN, 11/21/12]

Speaker Batschelder Said That Luckie Damaged The Public’s Trust In The House, Said Luckie Should Resign. According to The Associated Press “-The Ohio House speaker is calling on a state lawmaker to resign in the wake of a 49-count indictment that accuses him of skimming nearly $130,000 in campaign funds for his personal use and failing to list campaign expenditures for six years. Speaker William Batchelder said Wednesday that Rep. Clayton Luckie has damaged the public’s trust in the House and should resign. Batchelder, a Republican, says it’s in ‘the best interest’ of the Legislature and the people of Ohio that Luckie leave office.” [The Associated Press, 10/10/12]

###

Put a Tent on This Circus

Two independent watchdog groups slam Kasich for declining government accountability and transparency

Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern issued the following statement today in response to Governor John Kasich’s embarrassing inclusion among “The Worst Governors in America” as rated by the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, as well as Ohio’s ranking of 40th in the Better Government Association’s “Integrity Index”:

“The worst part about these rankings is that they’re guaranteed to get worse: Governor Kasich’s recent actions – supporting a horrifically retrograde assault on women’s healthcare that was slipped into the budget at the last minute and letting local governments follow the lead of JobsOhio and shield themselves from taxpayer scrutiny – happened too recently to be included. There’s simply no good reason for Ohio to be trending so unmistakably toward less government transparency and accountability, and Ohioans who are paying more in taxes and getting less in return are right to wonder what’s really going on behind the curtain.

Governor Kasich’s inclusion today in the ‘Worst Governors in America’ clown car – coming so soon on the heels of a budget-signing ceremony that garnered national attention for its incredible display of tone deafness – once again reveals a Governor adept at making our state a laughingstock. We’re not amused.”

BACKGROUND

CREW

Citizens For Responsibility And Ethics In Washington Called Kasich A “Sideshow”, Said “Kasich Will Do Whatever It Takes To Keep The Public In The Dark About The Non-Profit He Created, And Played Partisan Politics With His State’s Voting Laws” “According to CREW’s Worst Governor’s In America report ” Gov. Kasich will do whatever it takes to keep the public in the dark about the non-profit he created, and played partisan politics with his state’s voting laws. In February 2011, Gov. Kasich replaced Ohio’s Department of Development with JobsOhio, a private non-profit exempt from public record laws. Gov. Kasich’s administration resisted efforts by the state auditor to procure JobsOhio’s financial records, leading to a subpoena. JobsOhio ultimately complied, but Gov. Kasich later fast-tracked a bill to strip the state auditor’s authority to examine the records. Gov. Kasich also sought to institute new restrictions on voting, including the elimination of in-person voting three days before elections. After opponents of the bill gathered enough signatures to hold a referendum, Gov. Kasich signed a repeal of all the new measures, except the elimination of early voting. A federal appeals court reinstated early voting in October 2012.” [CREW Worst Governors In America report, 2013 - Full Report]

Better Government Association

Better Government Association Study “Paint[ed] Ohio As A Backwater When It Comes To Government Integrity”; Ranked Ohio 40th Among The States.   According to Columbus Dispatch “A Better Government Association study paints Ohio as a backwater when it comes to government integrity. A national study released this week by the Chicago nonprofit watchdog ranked Ohio 40th among the states in enabling citizens ‘to fight corruption by attending public meetings, reviewing government documents and raising questions without fear of retribution.’” [Columbus Dispatch, 7/17/13]

###

Ohio Democrats Applaud Expected Confirmation of Cordray

COLUMBUS, OHIO- Today, in a 71-29 bipartisan vote, the U.S. Senate invoked cloture, removing the final obstacle to former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray’s approval as the director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Senators Sherrod Brown and Robert Portman both voted for cloture, ending Republicans’ nearly three year refusal to hold an up or down vote on Cordray’s nomination. Tonight, following eight hours of debate, Richard Cordray is expected to be confirmed.

In response, Ohio Democratic Chairman Chris Redfern released the following statement:

“There has never been any doubt that Richard Cordray is a tireless consumer advocate with an exceptional legal background, superbly qualified to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. After the worst recession since the Great Depression, I’m thankful that one of Ohio’s own will lead the fight to protect consumers, students, and anyone else of which Wall Street might try to take advantage.

“With Cordray’s confirmation, Ohio and the nation can finally close this chapter and rest safer knowing that Rich is on the job.”

###

Annals of Republican Outreach to Ohio Women, Weekend Edition

VIDEO: Top GOP Strategist, Kasich Supporter: ‘Nobody really cares… all that much’ about women’s health issues

Kasich: ‘We need more women involved’ says governor apparently powerless to hire more women to senior roles

COLUMBUS – As questions about Governor John Kasich’s historic assault on women’s healthcare – which includes the defunding of Planned Parenthood and requiring women to undergo medically unnecessary ultrasounds – continue to swirl, one leading Ohio Republican offered a revealing response. On this weekend’s edition of ‘Capitol Square,’ Kasich supporter and top Ohio GOP strategist Bob Clegg had the following to say about issues of women’s health, and the impassioned fallout, HERE:

“That’s why Democrats won’t do well next year because they want to focus on issues that nobody really cares about all that much.”[VIDEO LINK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=otwaaVO79so]

This comes on the heels of a mystifyingly passive statement from Governor Kasich regarding women in government. According to the Columbus Dispatch, at a women-in-business luncheon last Friday, the Governor said:

We need more women involved in all of our operations, whether it is the cabinet positions, whether it is at JobsOhio, whether it is on the boards of trustees of our universities and community colleges,” – which is an odd thing for the person ultimately responsible for hiring his senior staff and making key appointments to say.

Meanwhile, women at the event must not have gotten Clegg’s memo regarding the significance of these issues:

Four women approached by The Dispatch at the event declined to answer questions pertaining to Kasich and his signing of a budget with abortion restrictions. Skinner said “maybe” some of those provisions did affect her personal opinion of Kasich.

“If (the budget) impacts Planned Parenthood, that’s unfortunate,” she said. [Columbus Dispatch, 7/13/13]

Another weekend, another sorry display of Ohio Republicans not getting it.

###

Historic Attacks on Middle-Class, Women Enacted by Gov. Kasich in Ohio

Handouts to the wealthy, tax increases for middle-class, defunding Planned Parenthood, forced ultrasounds in store for Ohioans

COLUMBUS, OHIO- Following Governor John Kasich’s signing of a state budget that attacks the middle-class and women, Ohio Democratic Chairman Chris Redfern released the following statement:

“If there was ever any doubt of John Kasich’s extremist values, he’s made his priorities crystal clear by attacking women’s health care and giving his wealthy and well-connected friends a $6,000 handout, paid for by tax raises on the middle-class. Kasich’s move to increase sales and property taxes shifts a greater burden on to working families across our state, and will make it even harder for local communities to fund essential services like education. And once again, the Governor has shown what a hypocrite and ineffective leader he can be by failing to take meaningful steps on Medicaid expansion.

“And with the stroke of a pen, Kasich launched an all-out assault on women’s health care, defunding Planned Parenthood and putting at risk the life-saving, critical health care they provide, including cancer screenings, HIV tests, and even birth control. But make no mistake, whether it’s John Kasich’s gag on rape crisis centers, the effort to shut down clinics across the state, or even his forced ultrasounds, this budget sets women’s health care back decades. Because of John Kasich, it’s a sad day in Ohio and women will suffer.”

###

Ohio Republican Budget to Harm Middle-Class Families and Women the Worst

COLUMBUS, OHIO- Today, the Ohio Legislature approved a state budget that rewards the wealthy and well-connected with thousands of dollars in handouts, while increasing taxes on the middle-class and setting women’s health care back decades. In a tight vote in the State House of Representatives, the budget passed 53-44, while passing in the State Senate 21-11.

In response, Ohio Democratic Chairman Chris Redfern released the following statement:

“In a narrow House vote, some of the state’s most conservative Republicans turned their backs on Governor Kasich because even they understand that this budget does more harm than good. This plan to reward the wealthy and well-connected with a $6,000 handout, financed by middle-class tax increases, will not improve our economy or create jobs. And these property tax increases for all Ohioans will have the unfortunate effect of making it even harder to pass school levies and fund other essential local services.

“But even more unconscionable than this tax shift is the all-out war Republicans have launched on women’s health care. From forcing women’s health clinics to close, placing new restrictions on the care rape-crisis centers can provide, to even defunding Planned Parenthood, Republicans have doubled down on the same attacks against women that worked so well in 2012. Unless Governor Kasich vetoes all the dangerous health provisions contained in this budget, women will suffer.”

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Topical Reminder: John Kasich Has a Terrible Record on LGBT Issues

COLUMBUS – In light of today’s landmark Supreme Court decision striking down the Defense of Marriage Act, it is worth noting that Ohio Governor John Kasich – who voted for DOMA in 1996 – has a truly terrible record on LGBT issues.

It’s not just DOMA. Kasich once said on the CBS news program “Face the Nation” that “I don’t approve of the gay lifestyle,” and he has a long record of opposing marriage equality and equal rights.

Let’s give credit where due, however: for about three hours last March, Kasich moderated his position and supported civil unions…before having a staff member clarify that he, in fact, opposes equality – by any name – after all. A position he reaffirmed today, responding to today’s groundbreaking news that he “supports traditional marriage.”

The record speaks for itself, and it doesn’t say anything good.

Kasich’s LGBT Record

Kasich: “I Don’t Approve Of The Gay Lifestyle.” On Face the Nation in 1998, Kasich said that “as a man of faith, I call tell you there’s behavior I don’t approve of, and I don’t approve of the–of the gay lifestyle, but what I’ll tell you is I don’t really focus on the sin; I focus on the good that people can bring to our society, and I urge my friends and they urge me to do better every single day.” [Face The Nation, CBS, 7/5/1998]

Marriage

Kasich Supported Ohio Constitutional Ban On Gay Marriage The Columbus Dispatch reported on September 26, 2010 that, “Kasich said marriage ‘is betweena man and a woman,’ and he supported the 2004 amendment to Ohio’s Constitutiondefining it as such.” [Columbus Dispatch, 9/26/10]

Kasich Opposed Marriage Equality, Said “I Don’t Believe That There Ought To Be Gay Marriages.”  On Hardball With Chris Matthews in 1999, when asked if a gay person could be president, he said, “Well, sure, I think it can happen.  But, Chris, let me just say this to you: I don’t–I don’t–I would never condemn somebody because of their lifestyle, but it doesn’t mean that–that I have to be approving of it.  In other words, I don’t believe that there ought to be gay marriages, but I’m not gonna run around trying to–to put the finger on people and try to condemn them… That’s–that’s really not my job.” [Hardball With Chris Matthews, MSNBC, 1/26/99]

Kasich Voted For The Defense Of Marriage Act.  In 1996, Kasich voted for the Defense of Marriage Act, which, the Akron Beacon Journal wrote, “define marriage as a heterosexual union only and limit marriage rights for gays and lesbians.’” [HR 3396, Vote #316, 7/12/96; Akron Beacon Journal, 7/13/96]

Kasich Flip Flopped On Supporting Civil Unions

March 20, 2013: Kasich Said He Supported Civil Unions; Said “If People Want To Have Civil Unions And Have Some Way To Transfer Their Resources, I’m For That.”  According to WCPO Channel 9: “Ohio Gov. John Kasich Wednesday said while he supports civil unions for same sex couples, he remains opposed to same sex marriage…. ‘If people want to have civil unions and have some way to transfer their resources, I’m for that. I don’t support gay marriage. ” [WCPO, 3/21/13]

  • March 21, 2013: Kasich’s Spokesman Reiterated Kasich’s Opposition To Civil Unions; Said “[Kasich] Opposes Changing Ohio’s Constitution To Allow For Civil Unions,” According to Buzzfeed ” Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich said he favored civil unions in an interview published Thursday morning, but by Thursday afternoon his spokesman said otherwise. ‘He may have used the term ‘civil union’ loosely in this instance,’ Kasich spokesperson Rob Nichols said in a statement sent to BuzzFeed. ‘The governor’s position is unchanged. He opposes gay marriage and opposes changing Ohio’s Constitution to allow for civil unions,’ said Nichols. ‘He’s opposed to discrimination against any Ohioan and, while he may have used the term ‘civil union’ loosely in this instance, he recognizes the existing rights of Ohioans to enter into private contracts to manage their personal property and health care issues.’” [Buzzfeed, 3/21/13]

Kasich Voted To Ban Adoptions By Gay Parents In Washington DC

Kasich Voted to Deny Adoptions By Homosexual Couples In The District Of Columbia. Kasich Voted Yes On H.R. 4380 (105th): The District of Columbia Appropriations Act, 1999  “Section 150 – Prohibits funds contained in this Act from being used: … to carry out any joint adoption of a child between individuals who are not related by blood or marriage.” [HR 4380, 8/3/98 – Roll Call available here]

Kasich Voted Three Times To Against Providing Medical Benefits For Homosexual Couples

1998:  Kasich Opposed Medical Benefits For Homosexual Couples In San Francisco. In 1998, Kasich voted to prohibit funds from being used to implement the San Francisco ordinance that requires private companies and organizations contracting with or receiving grants from the city to provide health care benefits to unmarried domestic partners of their workers.  [HR 4194, Vote #349, 7/29/1998; CQ Weekly, 8/1/98]

1993:  Kasich Voted To Ban Funds For Domestic Partners Program In DC.  In 1993, Kasich  voted in favor of legislation prohibiting Washington, D.C. from using federal funds to enforce “domestic partners” legislation allowing city workers to extend health benefits to an unrelated adult partner.  [HR 2492, Vote #313, 6/30/1993; Washington Times, 7/04/93]

1992:  Kasich Opposed Health Coverage For Domestic Partners.  In 1992, Kasich voted against a domestic partnership law allowing D.C. employees to extend health care coverage to a “domestic partner.”  The bill would also prohibit the use of federal funds for abortions except to save the life of the woman, but would place no prohibition on the use of locally raised funds. [HR 5517, Vote #275, 7/8/1992; Washington Times, 7/12/92]

Military Service Equality

Kasich Supported Don’t Ask Don’t Tell; Bill Discouraging Gays From Joining The Military.  In 1993, Kasich voted in favor of DADT, a bill banning gays from serving in the military.   According to the Washington Times, the bill “discourages homosexual enlistment in the military and brands homosexuality an ‘unacceptable risk’ to the morale of the armed services.” [HR 2401, Vote #462, 9/28/1993; Washington Times, 10/03/93]

  • Kasich: Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Is A “Great Policy” On Hardball With Chris Matthews in January 1999, when asked if a gay person should be allowed in the military, John Kasich said, “Yeah, I do. Sure, I do… But in terms of the military, you know, we’ve got don’t ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell…’ The president developed that with the Congress. I think it’s–it’s a great policy.” [Hardball With Chris Matthews, CNBC News Transcripts, 1/26/99]
  • 12,340 Service Members Were Discharged Because of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. The Associated Press reported on November 18, 2009 that, “the military dischargedabout 12,340 people between 1994 and 2007 for violating the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy,according to the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, a military watchdoggroup.” [Associated Press, 11/18/09]

Kasich Wrote Clinton Telling Him To Go Slow On Gays In The Military.  The Columbus Dispatch wrote, “Kasich joined all other [Armed Services] committee Republicans in a letter to Clinton Wednesday. It said, ‘We are concerned that your decision to change current Department of Defense policy regarding homosexuals will be made before the American public, Congress or our military have had an opportunity to understand the implications that such a decision might have for the readiness and quality of life of our armed forces.’” [Columbus Dispatch, 1/31/93]

Kasich Said Republicans Shouldn’t Support Gays In Military; It Would Make GOP “Be Mush.” When asked on Crossfire in 2000 why the GOP didn’t support gays in the military, Kasich said that “we’re inclusive, but we don’t want to be mush… on gays in the military, we have ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We think it’s the best policy.” [Crossfire, CNN, 8/1/00]

Discrimination

Kasich Revised State Policy To Allow Discrimination On Basis Of Gender Identity The Columbus Dispatch reported on January 22, 2011 that, “Gov. John Kasich signed an executive order yesterday setting an anti-discrimination policy for state-government employment…Kasich said in his campaign that he would continue a 2007 order from former Gov. Ted Strickland that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, but Kasich’s order leaves out ‘gender identity.’” [Columbus Dispatch, 1/22/11]

Kasich Suggested Implementing A “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” Policy In Community Programs Such As Big Brothers Big Sisters.  While guest hosting the O’Reilly Factor in 2002, and discussing the barring of openly gay volunteers from mentoring children in Big Brothers and Big Sisters programs, Kasich said that “there’s one thing I don’t understand. I’m a heterosexual, but I do not run around in the newsroom declaring my sexuality. What is this business about people feeling they must declare their sexual orientation? Why don’t we just adopt a policy like they have in the military, don’t ask, don’t tell, it’s nobody’s business, and if you exhibit some demonstration of your sexual orientation, you ought to be out?” [The O'Reilly Factor, Fox News, 8/16/02]

Kasich Voted Against Efforts To Prohibit Discrimination Based On Sexual Orientation In 1998, Kasich voted to defund implementation of Clinton’s executive order to prohibit discrimination in the federal civilian workforce. [HR 4276, Vote # 398, 8/5/98]

Kasich Opposed A Ruling Overturning Anti-Sodomy Law In Texas Guest hosting The O’Reilly Factor after the 2003 Lawrence v. Texas case declaring the Texas Anti-sodomy laws unconstitutional, Kasich said, “I don’t think it’s just a privacy issue. I think it’s going to have a profound impact on our culture… And frankly, I think a lot of people have missed the boat on this. This is going to open up a big debate with huge, cultural ramifications… I personally didn’t like the ruling” [The O'Reilly Factor, Fox News, 6/27/03]

Kasich Opposed Law Recognizing The Contributions Of The LGBT Community In History Lessons.  Guest-hosting The O’Reilly Factor in 2006, Kasich said of a California proposal to teach about the contributions of the LGBT community in schools, “They’re going to teach this in a book. I mean, what are they doing here… I’ll tell you something. It never ceases to amaze me. I love to come to California, but when I study this stuff, it never ceases to amaze me.” [The O'Reilly Factor, Fox News, 5/12/06]

Human Rights Campaign Rankings

Human Rights Campaign Ranked Kasich Low In Defending LGBT Rights.  From 1989 to 2001, Kasich only voted with the Human Rights Campaign’s positions an average of about 15% of the time, and never more than 30% of the time in a single meeting of Congress. [Human Rights Campaign Congressional Scorecards]

101st Congress (1989-1990):  30

102nd Congress (1991-1992):  0

103rd Congress (1993-1994):  14

104th Congress (1995-1996):  22

105th Congress (1997-1998):  13

106th Congress (1999-2000):  10

Paid for and authorized by the Ohio Democratic Party, not authorized by any federal candidate or campaign committee. Chris Redfern, Chairman, 340 East Fulton St, Columbus, Ohio 43215.