Ohio Republican Party Statement In Dropbox Case Blasted By Chief Justice

Sep 16, 2020

The Ohio Democratic Party is asking the Franklin County Common Pleas Court that issued a ruling that allows for the addition of ballot drop boxes to take action against the Ohio Republican Party too. The comment is also being condemned by the Chief Justice of the Ohio Supreme Court.

Shortly after the court issued its opinion, the Ohio Republican Party put out a tweet saying, in part, accusing the judge in the case of colluding with the plaintiff, the Ohio Democratic Party.

Tweet from Ohio Republican Party, Sept 16, 2020
Credit Twitter

Ohio Democratic Party Chairman David Pepper immediately denied he had any special treatment from the court and went on to chastise the Ohio Republican Party for making that accusation.

“The Republican Party reaction is just downright unhinged," Pepper says.

Pepper is asking the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas to find the Ohio Republican Party guilty of contempt in the case. He notes the comments are squarely against the Ohio Supreme Court's code of professional conduct for attorneys and those in the judiciary.

Code of professional conduct
Credit Ohio Supreme Court document

Pepper is not the only one upset by the comment. Republican Chief Supreme Court Justice Maureen O’Connor issued a condemnation of the party’s comments too.

“No matter how the judge ruled, to accuse them of partisanship is just at the hearts of what I think are efforts to weaken the judiciary," O'Connor said.

Comments from Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O'Connor
Credit Chief Justice Maureen O'Connor

O’Connor says she hasn’t read the case and will be independent minded if it is appealed into her court. When asked whether Jane Timken, the chair of the Ohio Republican Party approved the statement in question, spokesman Evan Machan issued a one line response: “You can attribute that statement to me.”