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Elected Republicans In Householder's District Want Him Expelled From Ohio House

House Speaker Larry Householder
Andy Chow
Ohio Public Radio
Ohio House Rep. Larry Householder

Several elected Republicans from former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder’s own district asked to have the lawmaker expelled, eight months after he was indicted on federal bribery charges.

Thirteen elected Licking County Republicans sent a letter to current House Speaker Bob Cupp (R-Lima) asking for Householder's removal from his seat in the Ohio House. A similar letter was sent to Cupp last month from elected Republicans from Coshocton County, which is also in Householder’s district.

The letter from the Licking County officials make it clear they want Cupp and House Republicans to expel Householder, something that leaders declined to do last summer after he was ousted as House Speaker.
“We ask that you and your colleagues exercise your constitutional authority and take immediate action to expel Mr. Householder from his seat in the legislature,” the letter reads.
The group writes that the House Republican caucus has had "sufficient time" to consider Householder’s situation since he was arrested and indicted in a $60 million federal pay-to-play scheme nearly eight months ago.

“The people of eastern and southern Licking County deserve to have adequate representation in Columbus," the letter continues.

The letter is signed by Licking County Republican Party Chair Jeanne Bolton, former GOP chair Neil Carson, GOP County Central Committee Chair Richard Salvage, GOP Executive Committee member Beth Yocum, Licking County Commissioners Tim Bubb and Rick Black, Sheriff Randy Thorp, Auditor Mike Smith, Recorder Bryan Long, Treasurer Roy VanAtta, Clerk of Courts Olivia Parkinson, Engineer Jared Knerr and Newark Mayor Jeff Hall.

Householder – who pleaded not guilty to racketeering charges – was ousted as speaker in July but re-elected in November, when he faced only write-in candidates.

Cupp said last year Householder could be expelled only once for a specific cause. Since the new session began in January, Cupp has repeatedly told reporters that he’s been talking to the caucus about Householder.

No decision on his situation has been made, but Cupp has also said the honorable thing for Householder to do would be to resign. Householder has so far declined to do so.

Householder has no committee assignments, but recently proposed two bills. One would give more power to county commissioners over county board of health orders. The other is a proposal to ask voters to approve a constitutional amendment giving lawmakers more power over a governor's emergency orders, which is similar to a bill that passed the House and Senate this week.