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Ohio U.S. Senator J.D. Vance Picked To Be Trump's Running Mate

GOP Lawmaker Accused Of Self-Dealing With Crisis Pregnancy Center Bill

State Rep. Candice Keller (R-Middletown)
Ohio House
State Rep. Candice Keller (R-Middletown)

The leader of the Ohio Democratic Party is criticizing a bill to give tax credits to people who donate to non-profit “crisis pregnancy centers,” which steer women away from abortion.

State Rep. Candice Keller (R-Middletown), who co-sponsors the bill, also operates one of 100 such centers around the state.

The bill would give people fully-refundable tax credits for the amount they give to crisis centers. Ohio Democratic Party Chairman David Pepper says Keller’s involvement is a case of self-dealing, because Keller is the paid, full-time director of a pregnancy resource center in Middletown.

“You know, in the world of ethics and good government, it raises a lot of flags," Pepper says.

In a written statement, Keller says the opposition is simply trying to create a diversion to tarnish her reputation. However, Keller says she has decided to abstain from working with the bill while it’s being considered.

“While all proper protocols were followed before I signed my name to this bill, I have informed Speaker Larry Householder that Will [sic] be abstaining from further participation with this bill as it goes through the legislative process,” Keller wrote.

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment.