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Three Ohio House conservatives attempting to impeach DeWine over COVID-19 orders

Virus Outbreak Ohio Governor
Posted at 11:24 AM, Aug 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-24 11:24:15-04

Clermont County Rep. John Becker, who describes himself as one of Ohio’s most conservative state lawmakers, announced Monday he intends to attempt impeachment proceedings against Gov. Mike DeWine.

In a news release, Becker claimed without citing evidence that DeWine’s various COVID-19 health orders have caused an increase in drug abuse and suicide by closing certain businesses and implementing a statewide mask mandate. He also repeated a myth — refuted by the American Lung Association and the World Health Organization — that face masks are, themselves, a health risk.

“I kept holding out hope that we wouldn’t get to this place,” Becker wrote. “For months and months, I’ve been hearing the cries of my constituents and of suffering people from every corner of Ohio. They keep screaming, ‘DO SOMETHING!’ They are hurting. Their businesses are declining and depreciating. Their jobs have vanished. The communities that have sustained their lives are collapsing, and becoming shells of what they once were.”

Becker also criticized DeWine’s opposition to laws that would limit the Ohio Department of Health’s power to issue health orders and preventing the government from moving or delaying an election, as Ohio did for its spring primary.

Becker’s articles of impeachment had two co-sponsors, both fellow arch-conservatives, by Monday morning: Rep. Paul Zeltwanger of Mason and Rep. A. Nino Vitale of Champaign County.

He would need 47 more in the House of Representatives to remove DeWine from office, plus a two-thirds majority of 22 votes in the Ohio Senate.