After nearly two months of a Republican-led legislative impasse, the Ohio House is expected to resume legislative activity following today’s narrow, marathon election of new House Speaker Ryan Smith (R-Bidwell). Chaos and dysfunction have plagued the legislature since the abrupt resignation of former Speaker Cliff Rosenberger (R-Clarksville), after he announced he was under FBI inquiry in April. Federal agents have since raided Rosenberger’s home, his state office and storage shed, as rumors of pay-to-play tactics on payday lending reform legislation continue to churn.


“After a state government shutdown of 55 days, the House GOP still couldn’t agree on a new Speaker, which forced us to take 11 separate votes to determine who will hold the gavel for the final six months of this terms,” said Rep. Kent Smith (D-Euclid). “I voted for Democratic Leader Fred Strahorn each of the eleven times because I believe the 8th House District and the rest of Ohio want the dirty campaigns and the pay-to-play politics to stop. Ohio’s middle class keeps falling further and further behind as a result of one party rule for 24 out of the last 28 years. This 55 day government shutdown is just the latest evidence that Ohio needs a major change in direction.”


Republican gridlock continued onto the House floor as the legislature held 11 rounds of voting to elect Smith, who becomes the first speaker in modern history to assume control of the Ohio House without securing a majority of votes. In a narrow vote, Smith was awarded the speakership under Ohio law with only 44 votes.


 

 
 
 
  
Featured Posts

Rep Smith: Ohio House GOP Offers No Solution To The Massive Great Lakes Plastic Pollution Problem, Prevents Localities From Trying To Fix It

 

State Rep. Kent Smith (D-Euclid) spoke on the Statehouse Floor on Wednesday, December 11, 2019, in opposition to House Bill 242 which would prevent local governments from enacting plastic bag bans and other similar legislation.



 
 

Rep. Kent Smith Supports Legislation To Strengthen Striking Workers

 

State Rep. Kent Smith (D-Euclid) today issued a statement following a Statehouse press conference Thursday morning, where he joined lawmakers Rep. Jeff Crossman (D-Parma),  Rep. Lisa Sobecki (D-Toledo) and UAW workers to support legislation to extend unemployment benefits and food assistance to union workers fighting for fair wages, better benefits and safer working conditions. The call comes amid a nationwide strike by UAW employees, who reached a tentative labor agreement Wed. on the 31st day of their strike with General Motors.



 
 

Rep. Kent Smith Issues Statement On Dayton Shooting, Says More Needs To Be Done To Keep Children And Families Safe

 

State Rep. Kent Smith (D-Euclid) today issued a statement on the state legislature’s duty to work together to address senseless gun violence and keep all Ohioans safe and secure in the wake of a mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio this past weekend:

“The first, best step that we can take in Ohio to curtail senseless gun violence is to close all background check loopholes,” said Smith. “Today in Columbus, I agreed to co-sponsor Democratic priority legislation: Extreme Risk Protection Order (Russo, Sweeney), the High-Capacity Magazine Ban (Weinstein), and legislation Closing the Background Check Loophole (Robinson).



 
 

State Lawmakers Send Bipartisan Transportation Budget Bill To Governor's Desk

 

House Minority Whip and state Rep. Kent Smith (D-Euclid) today supported the final passage of House Bill (HB) 62, the state’s bipartisan two-year transportation budget. The bill makes historic investments in public transit and local communities for road and bridge repairs.