Smith maintains role as speaker of Ohio House

COLUMBUS — Republicans decided to keep Ryan Smith, R-Bidwell, as the speaker of the house during a caucus meeting Thursday.

Bidwell faced a challenge former House Speaker Larry Householder, who’s returned to the House as a state representative from Perry County.

The remainder of the leadership team was also selected. State Rep. Rick Carfanga, R-Genoa Township, will serve as Speaker Pro Tempore; Rep. Bill Seitz, R-Cincinnati, will continue as Majority Floor Leader; and Rep. Sarah LaTourette, R-Chesterland, continues as Assistant Majority Floor Leader. Also keeping their positions are Rep. Tom Patton, R-Strongsville, as Majority Whip and Rep. Bill Reineke, R-Tiffin, as Assistant Majority Whip.

The leadership positions and new members officially take charge Jan. 7.

“I’m incredibly proud of the work this caucus has accomplished since I was elected Speaker earlier this year, and I have every confidence that members will continue to work together to make Ohio communities stronger,” Smith said in a statement.

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