Ohio’s religious leaders are walking a fiscal tightrope with political endorsements: Capitol Letter

Rumbles from the rotunda

Holy Bearing: Candidates from across Ohio boast endorsements from religious figures across the state. Gaining the support of religious leaders can be important. However, it may seem odd for religious leaders to endorse candidates, given that churches and other religious organizations could lose their tax-exempt status if they engage in partisan politics. Federal law allows churches to engage in nonpartisan political efforts, such as publishing voter guides and organizing urge-to-vote campaigns. Jeremy Pelzer explores how approving religious leaders must walk a fine line and how little attention the IRS pays to the issue.

Ill DeWines: First lady Fran DeWine tested positive for coronavirus just days after it was announced that her husband, Governor Mike DeWine, had contracted the virus. Laura Hancock reports that a spokesperson for the governor said that, like her husband’s symptoms, Fran DeWine is experiencing mild effects from the virus. Both DeWines are quarantined at home. The 75-year-old governor continues to work – taking calls and hosting virtual meetings at home.

money hunt: Quarterly campaign finance reports that show spending for Congressional races in Northeast Ohio show that most first-time candidates have invested thousands of dollars in their goal of serving in Congress, while more established politicians did not need to dip into their own pockets to finance campaigns. , reports Sabrina Eaton. The biggest self-financiers were Republicans Max Miller in the 7th congressional district and Madison Gesiotto Gilbert who is running in the 13th.

Typed: Fundraising for Ohio Senate hopefuls showed signs of slowing in the first quarter of 2022, logging around $3.4 million between them, reports Seth Richardson. Conversely, Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan raised more than $4 million, including contributions from 20 sitting senators, Richardson writes.

Just do it: A group representing Ohio election officials said Monday that the state or a panel of federal judges must act this week to schedule the state’s legislative primary election for Tuesday, August 2. As Pelzer writes, the Ohio Association of Election Officials argued that if legislative primaries were scheduled after Aug. 2, as the Ohio Supreme Court suggested, it would interfere with the work of election officials to preparing for the general elections in November.

Take out the lead: Federal EPA Administrator Michael Regan, HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge, U.S. Representative Shontel Brown and Cleveland Mayor Justin Bibb were among the attendees at a panel discussion on lead poisoning at the Great Lakes Science Center in Cleveland on Monday. As Courtney Astolfi reports, Democrats welcomed the passage of the bipartisan infrastructure bill, which Brown says will provide Ohio with $70 million this year to replace contaminated pipes, with more funding in the coming years. next four years.

Signed into law: Governor Mike DeWine on Monday signed House Bill 95, which earmarks $338 million for National School Lunch Program reimbursement payments; provides state income tax credits to beginning farmers who participate in a financial management program; increases the weight limit for trucks that can be purchased at car shows; and grandfathers in “layered” tax increase funding districts (thus avoiding a major financial problem for up to 20 development projects in the city of Cincinnati alone).

To the right : Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose, a Republican from Columbus who could challenge Democratic U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown in 2024 or seek another post in 2026, has turned to the political right on issues such as the redistricting, President Joe Biden’s 2020 victory, and voter fraud in Ohio. . Laura Bischoff of the Columbus Dispatch explains how LaRose’s change comes as he is contested by the far right in the upcoming primary election.

Walkout Buzzkill: U.S. Senate candidate from Ohio Morgan Harper says Hilliard City School wasted school resources by filing a police report accusing the Democrat of trespassing as he spoke at a rally student supporting LGBTQ+ rights. The Dispatch’s Yilun Cheng reports that Harper joined about 150 students at Hilliard Darby High School in the northeast suburb of Columbus as they walked out of class to protest Bill 616, which would ban discussion of sexual orientation. and gender identity through fourth grade. in most Ohio schools. Harper gave a short speech at the school stadium. The district said it did not invite Harper and filed an unauthorized entry report. The district also filed a complaint with the Ohio Election Commission and barred him from school.

Laffy Taft: Former Ohio Governor Bob Taft gave a rare interview with the Cincinatti Enquirer’s “It’s So Cincinnati” podcast where he says he’s sure he’d have a hard time getting elected in the current political climate. “I’m not sure there’s a lot of center-right … on the Republican side,” Taft said, according to reporters Sharon Coolidge and Jason Williams. “It could be a big challenge for someone like me to get elected as a Republican. There is no middle way there. Taft also noted that he was not a big fan of former President Trump, although like many Republicans the problem is one of personality. “I like some policies. I like his judicial nominations, but I’m personally not a big fan of Donald Trump. But he had a huge influence on the Republican Party.

Junior in Ohio: Donald Trump Jr. will campaign in Medina County on Wednesday night with Jim Renacci, a Republican gubernatorial candidate, although he is unknown whether the son or the father will make an endorsement in this race. Earlier Wednesday, Trump Jr. will campaign with JD Vance in Cuyahoga County. The author and venture capitalist is running as a Republican for the Ohio Senate and received the former president’s endorsement last week.


Welcome to Capitol Letter’s weekly ad digest. Every week we use data provided by a consulting and ad tracking company Average purchase to learn more about where and when candidates spend their advertising dollars.

This week, we look at spending from April 10-16 in Ohio’s Republican gubernatorial primary by candidates and the PACs supporting them:

Figures from Medium Buying. Artwork by Seth Richardson/cleveland.com.

Mike DeWine

  • Broadcast: $677,177
  • Cable: $162,954
  • Radio: $0
  • Total: $840,131

Jim Renacci

  • Broadcast: $161,604
  • Cable: $59,435
  • Radio: $0
  • Total: $221,039

Joe Blystone

  • Broadcast: $0
  • Cable: $0
  • Radio: $0
  • Total: $0

Ron Hood

  • Broadcast: $0
  • Cable: $0
  • Radio: $0
  • Total: $0
Figures from Medium Buying.  Artwork by Seth Richardson/cleveland.com.

Figures from Medium Buying. Artwork by Seth Richardson/cleveland.com.

Who spent the most money this cycle on advertising (including supporting CAPs)?

Mike DeWine:

Jim Renacci:

Joe Blystone:

Ron Hood:

Figures from Medium Buying.  Artwork by Seth Richardson/cleveland.com.

Figures from Medium Buying. Artwork by Seth Richardson/cleveland.com.

No free: Gov. Mike DeWine is apparently leaving nothing to chance in the primary, spending nearly four times as much as former Rep. Jim Renacci. Former state Rep. Ron Hood and Franklin County businessman Joe Blystone continue to be absent from the ad spend game with just two weeks to vote.

Figures from Medium Buying.  Artwork by Seth Richardson/cleveland.com.

Figures from Medium Buying. Artwork by Seth Richardson/cleveland.com.


Republican U.S. Senate candidate Matt Dolan, state senator from Chagrin Falls, begins a five-day campaign tour of 18 cities, starting today. Dolan’s announcement included an endorsement from Mary Ann Voinovich, sister of late Ohio Governor and U.S. Senator George Voinovich.

On Monday, a new group called Catholics for Ryan announced that it would advocate for the election of US Representative Tim Ryan to the US Senate. He said that in recent years politicians have normalized lies, embraced hateful and dangerous rhetoric and besmirched cherished institutions, which are offensive to the group’s values. He said Ryan, a Democrat from Niles, did not engage in these tactics and instead sought common ground and the common good.

Adrianne Fletcher, an administrator and professor at Case Western Reserve University, has been named the Ohio Supreme Court’s first director of diversity, equity, and inclusion. She will identify ways in which the court can better reflect the diverse demographics of the state and identify opportunities for a better understanding of access, for people with disabilities or language barriers. Fletcher will also advise on the recruitment, training and retention of court personnel, and help develop timely judicial and administrative education programs related to DEI.

Ohio Tenth District Court of Appeals Judge Terri Jamison, a Democrat, has been endorsed for the Ohio Supreme Court by the Ohio AFL-CIO.

Straight from the source

“In most of our cases, we have handwritten notes that wouldn’t pass the mark.”

-Peggy Lee, attorney at Southeast Ohio Legal Services, on alternative financing arrangements that have helped low-income Americans buy mortgage-free homes. Many, however, lose their property and lack protections under federal or state law, NPR’s Jennifer Ludden reports. A Pew study shows that 20% of all borrowers have found another way to finance a home purchase at some point.

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