LIMA — Three hopeful Democratic candidates stopped at Lima’s Hover Park stocked with a full arsenal of weapons to attack their Republican foes on Thursday.
Dubbing themselves the “Corrupt Busters” the three spoke in a slight drizzle. Perhaps, warmed by the heavy artillery of insults launched at potential primary opponents like grenades, the hopeful withstood the wind for more than an hour.
State attorney general candidate Jeff Crossman joined Marion Mayor and state treasurer hopeful Scott Schertzer and Democratic candidate for state auditor Taylor Sappington in criticizing their Republican counterparts’ morals as they leaned into Larry Householder’s corruption trial.
“Ohio finds itself in the middle of the largest public corruption scandal in its history with the arrest and expulsion of a speaker of the house — an expulsion I helped lead. Working-class Ohioans are left to foot a $287,000 per day bill created by a corrupt party that has controlled Ohio for the last 40-plus years,” Crossman said.
They criticized DeWine’s leadership, laying a cult of corruption at his feet. Painting a picture of complicity, if not one of a participant in unethical acts, they accused Republicans of lining their pockets with “dark money” from interest groups and forsaking Ohioans.
“I know how hard it is when you’re struggling,” Sappington said. “The last thing we should be doing is putting struggling families further behind by asking them to shell out for GOP corruption.”
They say they are like most individuals in the state and were raised to know right from wrong.
“Like so many other towns across Ohio, Marion works cooperatively to solve problems. We get things done collaboratively just like mayor Sharetta Smith probably does here in Lima,” Schertzer said. “We are a community of good people who just wants to do what’s right for their families. Corruption has run rampant and politicians like Robert Sprague (state treasurer) have been asleep at the wheel. From the FirstEnergy scandal to misspent Medicaid dollars to the governor’s airplane travel — your tax dollars are being wasted. Worst of all, we haven’t heard a peep out of Sprague about what he plans to do about it.”
Allen County Republican Chairman Keith Cheney remarked anyone can make a number up but it doesn’t make it a fact.
“It’s amazing Democrats come here but don’t want to talk development, job creation or the great things happening in the county. Ultimately, the income will show the benefits of conservative leadership. I suggest they research (state auditor) Keith Faber recovering billions of tax dollars through prosecuting corrupt politicians.” Cheney said.
“I’ll finish by quoting the words of a Democrat and former President Barack Obama ‘elections have consequences,’” Cheney quipped before ending the conversation.
Reach Joe Gilroy at 567-242-0398 or @TLNJoeGilroy