The former Ohio House speaker who’s been indicted in a federal corruption case related to the nuclear bailout law he championed has proposed two new bills – both dealing with accountability in government.
One bill from Rep. Larry Householder (R-Glenford) would ask voters next year if a governor’s executive order could be changed or ended by a majority vote of state lawmakers.
The other would allow county commissioners to modify or terminate a county board of health order.
Bob Cupp (R-Lima), who replaced Householder as speaker, said he didn’t have any reaction at all to these bills from his predecessor.
“Mr. Householder is a member of the Ohio House and members have the right to introduce bills and they will be handled according to the rules of the House," Cupp said in a call with reporters after Thursday's House session.
Cupp said last year that a House member can only be expelled once for a particular reason, so it was suggested he would be removed by the incoming House members. But he remains in the House. And Cupp has said the 64 members of the Republican House caucus haven’t decided whether Householder should be expelled.
But fellow Republican Rep. Brian Stewart (R-Ashville) slammed Householder on Twitter:
If a bank teller gets caught stealing, they don’t get to handle the cash drawer while their case works through the courts.
When a legislator is indicted for selling legislation, he shouldn’t be left in a position to introduce bills.
It’s time to expel. https://t.co/Xhs18oZcdk
— Brian Stewart (@BrianStewartOH) March 4, 2021
Householder's proposed bill on allowing lawmakers to vote on executive orders is an idea included in a bill that's passed the Senate and another that was proposed in the House. But his plan would put it on the May 2022 ballot - during what's likely to be a hotly contested primary for the open U.S. Senate seat and for governor.
Gov. Mike DeWine has said he would veto any bill that would limit a governor's power to issue health orders, saying it's not just about his authority but about that of future governors.