ICYMI: Chair Walters Op-Ed for Cincinnati.com: Bribery Scandal Runs Deep within Ohio Republican Party
January 24, 2023
Columbus, OH – In case you missed it, Chair Elizabeth Walters penned an op-ed for Cincinnati.com that details the deep connections between Ohio Republicans and the FirstEnergy Bribery scandal as the federal court trial plays out in Cincinnati. While disgraced former Speaker Larry Householder and former Ohio Republican Party Chair Matt Borges are the ones on trial, several prominent Republicans remain closely connected to the scandal, including those with higher political ambitions in 2024.
“Working Ohioans, who have been fleeced by radical republican politicians for far too long, deserve accountability, and we’re hopeful that the Larry Householders and Matt Borges of the world will be brought to justice soon. But we’re also hopeful that the Republican politicians who have empowered them or who stood complicitly by as they orchestrated illegal schemes will be held accountable, too – especially the ones who will be asking the voters of Ohio for a new job come 2024,” writes Walters.
Read more of Walters’ op-ed for Cincinnati.com HERE and below:
- This week, federal trials begin in Cincinnati for the largest corruption scandal in Ohio history. We’re hopeful that the individuals who orchestrated this multi-million bribery scheme will finally be held accountable.
- We know that top-level GOP politicians and operatives took millions of dollars from dark money groups connected to FirstEnergy and used that money to enrich themselves and fellow public officials.
- Over the coming days and weeks, we’ll hear about the misdeeds of Larry Householder and Matt Borges. But the scandal reaches much deeper within the Ohio Republican Party, including current elected officials with higher political ambitions.
- Dave Yost, allegedly the state’s top cop, has yet to take any meaningful action to hold his friends in the Ohio Republican Party accountable for the bribery scandal. Which makes sense when you remember that his campaign manager was Matt Borges, who gave Yost a $10,000 donation after he got his piece of the pie from the dark money scheme. Yost himself said, “It would be foolish for anyone to accept campaign contributions from these defendants,” before he was publicly shamed into giving Borges’ donation to charity.
- And there’s Matt Dolan, newly-announced candidate for U.S. Senate, who voted for HB 6 and told Cleveland.com in 2020 that he’d vote for it again.
- FirstEnergy’s dark money group gave $85,000 to Matt Dolan’s dark money group, and probably not out of the goodness of their hearts.
- Frank LaRose took more than $25,000 from FirstEnergy in 2018 and FirstEnergy still sits on LaRose’s top 20 list of political donors. As recently as 2021, LaRose was fundraising with the Strategy Group, who produced dark-money funded ads for the HB 6 campaign.
- And sitting Congressman Mike Carey gave $100,000 to Larry Householder’s dark money group through his employer, Murray Energy. When FirstEnergy executives were texting about the donation, one put it pretty bluntly: “Mike Carey has all the paperwork.”
- Meanwhile, the organization that is charged with electing all of these folks to higher office – the Ohio Republican Party – has taken more than $85,000 from FirstEnergy since 2018 and refuses to give that money back. It would be an interesting question for their new Chairman on what he plans to do with all that cash.
- Working Ohioans, who have been fleeced by radical republican politicians for far too long, deserve accountability, and we’re hopeful that the Larry Householders and Matt Borges of the world will be brought to justice soon.
- But we’re also hopeful that the Republican politicians who have empowered them or who stood complicitly by as they orchestrated illegal schemes will be held accountable, too – especially the ones who will be asking the voters of Ohio for a new job come 2024.