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Ohio Republican Lawmakers File Articles of Impeachment Against GOP Governor Over COVID-19 Orders

Ohio Republican Lawmakers File Articles of Impeachment Against GOP Governor Over COVID-19 Orders

A group of five Republican lawmakers in Ohio filed 12 articles of impeachment on Monday against Governor Mike DeWine, who is also a Republican, over his implementation of COVID-19 restrictions.

Photo by Justin Merriman/Getty Images

GOP State Representatives John Becker (Union Township), Nino Vitale (Champagne County), Candice Keller (Butler County), and Paul Zeltwanger (Deerfield Township, Lebanon and Mason) said their allegations against DeWine are an “effort to restore the rule of law” because they believe DeWine’s coronavirus orders are unconstitutional.

“Governor DeWine’s mismanagement, malfeasance, misfeasance, abuse of power, and other crimes include, but are not limited to, meddling in the conduct of a presidential primary election, arbitrarily closing and placing curfews on certain businesses, while allowing other businesses to remain open. He weaponized the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation to bully and harass businesses and the people; to enforce a statewide mask mandate and other controversial measures of dubious ‘value,’ making Ohio a hostile work environment,” the representatives said in a statement.

The GOP quartet accused DeWine of causing undue harm to Ohioans, even though his actions were solely aimed at protecting residents of his state from COVID-19, which is spreading uncontrollably.

“Rather than hearing the cries of Ohioans, Governor DeWine continues to stifle those cries by finding more inventive ways to use masks to muffle the voices of the people,” Baker said. “He continues to have callous disregard for the fact that his isolation policies have led to a shockingly high number of suicides, alarming rates of drug abuse, persistently high unemployment, and the forced abandonment of the elderly by their loved ones.”

In Ohio, the House of Representatives files the impeachment charges and the State Senate conducts the trial, per the Ohio State Constitution. Two-thirds of the State Senate must vote to remove DeWine from office.

The lawmakers first threatened to impeach DeWine back in August, but DeWine brushed it off.

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“As governor, my priorities are to keep people safe and to get our economy moving faster,” DeWine said at the time. “If there are others in the legislature who want to spend their time drawing up resolutions and filing articles … I’d just say to them, ‘Have at it.'”

DeWine’s term ends on January 9, 2023.

Fifty-one days until the inauguration.

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