Here’s What They’re Saying: Democrats Make DeWine Keep All HB 6 Info In FirstEnergy Scandal
July 8, 2022
For Immediate Release:
Friday, July 8, 2022
Columbus, OH — In case you missed it, Ohio Democrats expanded a lawsuit against Mike DeWine and his office to strengthen ongoing efforts to gain answers into what DeWine and his cronies knew and when about the largest public corruption scandal in state history. Thursday, Ohio Democratic Party Chairwoman Elizabeth Walters announced a preliminary injunction in the party’s ongoing lawsuit against DeWine to assure key public records are not destroyed and are ultimately shared with Ohio voters.
Since May, none of the records requests filed by ODP have been fulfilled despite empty claims from the DeWine team about the governor’s commitment to “transparency and accountability.” Ohioans should know Democrats will not stop fighting to make sure Ohioans get the answers they deserve.
“Nothing we’re asking for is complicated: emails and texts between Mike DeWine, Jon Husted and their staffs about HB 6, correspondence between the administration and the organizations and individuals connected to the scandal and a full, unredacted calendar from Mike DeWine accounting for how he was spending his taxpayer-funded time. These are questions we started asking in October, answers Ohio voters deserve,” said Chair Walters.
Here’s what Ohioans are reading about the new legal action today:
“Ohio Democrats are seeking to forestall any destruction of Gov. Mike DeWine’s records related to the FirstEnergy bribery scandal, asking for a court injunction against disposing of materials they’ve requested.
“‘These are questions we started asking in October, answers Ohio voters deserve,’ Ohio Democratic Party Chair Elizabeth Walters said Thursday. ‘But Mike DeWine and his lackeys apparently think that they don’t need to do their job or be held accountable – that they’re above the law. We’re here to make sure they know they aren’t.’
“Democrats maintain everything they’ve requested should be made available and is of public interest. They specifically requested all communications between DeWine, Husted, 13 current or former senior staff members and Sam Randazzo, former chair of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, regarding FirstEnergy and numerous related organizations.
“On May 5, the Ohio Democratic Party filed a civil suit in Franklin County Court of Common Pleas, seeking an unredacted version of DeWine’s calendar and a detailed, 30-item list of related communications. That drew “nothing but crickets” from the administration, Walters said.
“She accused DeWine of stalling to “run out the clock,” potentially until the legal requirement to preserve those records expires.
“Thus the party filed its latest request, for an injunction to prevent destruction of the information sought.
“Nan Whaley, former Dayton mayor and now Democratic nominee for governor, has assailed DeWine’s connections to the scandal, alleging FirstEnergy spent “millions” to aid his election.”
“[Democrats] want this judge to force the governor to preserve any and all documents that might be linked to that House Bill 6 scandal.
“Democrats have already sued to obtain unredacted calendars from the governor, along with other documents they say could connect him to that scandal.”
Since October, Ohio Democrats have been working on getting answers to who knew what and when about the FirstEnergy scandal – which Ohioans continue to pay $287,000 every single day for – but have been stonewalled at every turn by the DeWine administration, leaving public records requests unanswered. The lack of answers from DeWine leads to even more questions about what DeWine is hiding, especially as the scandal inches closer and closer to DeWine and his inner circle.
- Find the preliminary injunction HERE.
- Find the submitted public records requests HERE.
- Find the records Ohio Democrats have successfully obtained from the DeWine administration HERE.