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

Former Ohio lawmaker testifies she was pressured by Householder to pass nuclear bailout

Former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder walks into the Cincinnati courthouse with two attorneys.
Joshua A. Bickel
Former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder, center, walks into Potter Stewart U.S. Courthouse with his attorneys, Mark Marein, left, and Steven Bradley, right, before jury selection in his federal trial, Friday, Jan. 20, 2023, in Cincinnati.

A former state lawmaker and the head of a group that tried to get the state’s billion-dollar nuclear power plant bailout repealed in 2019 were on the stand in federal court in Cincinnati Tuesday.

Tuesday marked the start of the fifth week of the racketeering trial of Republican former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder and ex-Ohio GOP chair Matt Borges.

Republican former state representative Laura Lanese, of Grove City, said she was pressured by Householder to vote for the nuclear bailout law known as House Bill 6, but Borges didn’t lobby her on it.

She ended up being among 38 representatives who voted against it.

Also testifying for the prosecution was Michael Roberson, who led a group hired to collect signatures for a ballot issue to overturn House Bill 6.

Roberson said his signature gatherers were stalked and harassed by the group that was trying to protect House Bill 6 – which he described as “like a war zone.”

Householder and Borges are accused in a $61 million bribery scheme to pass House Bill 6 for FirstEnergy.