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Ohio House Speaker Mum On Adding Party ID For Some Judicial Candidates

New Ohio House Speaker Rep. Bob Cupp (R-Lima) speaks during an announcement of a proposed overhaul school funding for schools in Ohio at the Statehouse in Columbus, March 25, 2019.
John Minchillo
Ohio House Speaker Bob Cupp (R-Lima)

The leader of the Ohio House isn’t saying where he stands on a bill that would show party identification for certain judicial candidates on the ballot.

Ohio House Speaker Bob Cupp was an Ohio Supreme Court justice but lost re-election to a Democrat in 2012.

Currently, judicial candidates in Ohio run in partisan primaries, but appear on general election ballots without their party affiliation. A new House bill would add those affiliations for appellate court and state Supreme Court races.

“I think there is significant support in the House for doing that. I don’t think it’s without some question as to whether that is the appropriate thing," Cupp says.

Cupp says judges are supposed to be non-partisan, but he notes many voters who cast votes in other races fail to vote in judicial races. Last year, Republican former Supreme Court Justice Judi French lost to Democratic former Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner, shifting the balance of the state's highest court to 4-3 Republican.

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.