Mike DeWine released a statement to the press this week, along with Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters, warning Ohioans about “scam artists” who are “posing as … law enforcement officials.” While the threat may be real, the source of the warning comes from two guys who are hardly role models on the topics.
DeWine, you may remember, used photos of actors ‘posing as law enforcement officials’ on a flier he distributed at the recent state FOP convention in Ohio, hoping to sway the endorsement vote. The Ohio FOP overwhelmingly endorsed DeWine’s Democratic opponent David Pepper, as did the Ohio State Troopers Association, the union representing rank and file members of the Ohio Highway Patrol.
DeWine is currently under fire for steering lucrative AG’s office contracts to lawyers and law firms making large contributions to his campaign. Not surprisingly, Deters was accused of the same thing back in 2006 when he was Ohio Treasurer. While Deters “officially” avoided prosecution for the crimes, his then chief-of-staff Matthew Borges pleaded guilty to steering state business to brokers who made large contributions to Deters’ campaign.
The scandal left Deters’ hopes of running for AG dashed, while Borges temporarily left public politics for the private (and more profitable) profession of lobbying.
Deters silently slunk back to Hamilton County to play prosecutor while waiting impatiently for his triumphant return to statewide politics. A return that will never, ever, ever, EVER happen despite his many recent attempts to win favor with Ohio GOP party leaders.
Borges, however, beat the odds; burying his less-than-closeted skeletons a little sooner, and signing on as Kasich’s anointed head of the Ohio Republican Party. Despite his law-breaking past, Borges was brought back into the fold as party chairman after Team Kasich ousted Kevin DeWine, Mike’s cousin, claiming he wasn’t conservative enough. In reality, Kasich just wanted one of his lackeys in charge of the party’s purse strings and Kevin wasn’t willing to play along.
Unchecked ambition. Deceit. Disrespect. Downright dirty pay-to-play politics.
Ladies and gentlemen, may I present… today’s Ohio Republican Party.