The Significance of the $60M Ohio Corruption Scandal

This is a repost of the viral Twitter thread by Matthew Chapman:

I think most people who don’t live in Ohio don’t get how big the Larry Householder scandal is.

Yes, Householder allegedly laundered a $60 million bribe from lobbyists through a dark money group. But the bigger story is *what* he got bribed to do.

Last year, Ohio passed HB6, which has been called one of the worst energy bills of the 21st century.

It bailed out several failing coal and nuclear plants, wiped out renewable energy subsidies, and canceled a $4 billion program to help Ohioans make energy efficiency upgrades.

A LOT of people were pissed off about that bill.

It didn’t just hurt the environment. It hurt working people, it hurt small businesses, it hurt large businesses. That bill was almost tailor-made to force *everyone* to pay more to utility companies.

The allegation from federal prosecutors is that the $60 million bribe Householder accepted was facilitated by lobbyists from FirstEnergy — who were basically the only ones leaning on him to pass this bill.

And there needs to be a much broader reckoning than just the criminal charges against Householder.

Gov. Mike DeWine signed the bill. A majority of Republicans in the state House and Senate passed it. So many hands are dirty. Everyone should have to answer for it.

And incredibly, that energy bill might just be the beginning.

Federal prosecutors also think Householder solicited bribes from payday lenders and nursing homes in exchange for favorable legislation. The Ohio legislature’s entire term looks tainted.

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I started Need Change to write about important issues regarding society, politics, media, climate change, COVID-19, psychology, and racism. My work has been featured by the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the U.S. & U.K. Governments. Keep reading to hear the perspective of someone who grew up in America, has lived in 15+ countries, and is deeply passionate about uniting humanity and improving the world. Feel free to click the chat in the bottom right if you ever want to talk! I'm friendly :).