Householder needs to do the right thing

Ohio House of Representatives Speaker Larry Householder should step down from that position, at least temporarily. His arrest this week makes him ineffective as leader of one of the General Assembly’s two chambers.

Householder, who represents a district astride Interstate 70 between Zanesville and Columbus, is involved in a federal probe of an alleged $60 million bribery scheme. Along with him, four others were arrested Tuesday.

He is innocent until proven guilty, of course, but one way or another, his ability to function as House speaker has been compromised severely. Turning those duties over to Speaker Pro Tempore Jim Butler, R-Oakwood, is the right thing to do for Ohioans.

That is especially obvious in light of Householder’s checkered past. He had served as speaker from 2001-04, leaving the House because of term limits. He returned in 2017.

But during his previous service, Householder and some advisers “were under federal investigation for alleged money laundering and irregular campaign practices,” The Associated Press reported. No charges were filed.

Householder should do the right thing and step down as speaker — or be removed from the post.


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