Thursday, September 03, 2009

RELEASE: Batchelder Announces Bill to Strengthen Campaign Finance Laws

COLUMBUS - Ohio House Republican Leader William G. Batchelder (R-Medina) today announced plans to introduce legislation to close an avenue for corruption in Ohio’s campaign finance law, in response to the ongoing investigation within Cuyahoga County. Batchelder’s proposal would prohibit contributions to be made from county employees to county official’s campaign committees.

“Allowing county officeholders to solicit and receive contributions from their employees opens the door for corruption in government,” Batchelder said. “It’s a mistrust of one’s obligation to the public.”

FBI officials have continued to investigate Cuyahoga County as it became clear that county officials received financial contributions from their employees. Cuyahoga County Treasurer Jim Rokakis, one of the few Cuyahoga County Democrat officials who have not been implicated by the ongoing scandal, has worked with Leader Batchelder to draft this legislation. Recently, Rokakis has observed thousands of dollars being raised by county officials from their employees.

“You have to get the money out of politics,” Rokakis said. “It is the only way to have real reform.”

“The ramifications of the Cuyahoga County government crisis are still uncertain,” Batchelder continued. “It is necessary for us to fix these shortfalls so that the people can have a more transparent and accountable government.”

Batchelder Campaign Finance Bill