Further fallout from the wingnuttier-than-thou mud bath that was the Ohio Fifth special election primary, reported today by GateHouse News Service:
- COLUMBUS – Angry at inter-party attack ads in a recent congressional primary, the Ohio Republican Party will develop a code of conduct and ethics and a preferred list of vendors and consultants for future primary and general elections, including one next year in Northeast Ohio.
“I am angry about it,” said Republican Chairman Robert Bennett about the fight between State Sen. Stephen Buehrer, R-Delta, and State Rep. Robert Latta, R-Bowling Green.
Last month, the two conservatives got dirty attacking each other, claiming each was a liberal and linking each other to unpopular former Gov. Bob Taft and convicted coin dealer Tom Noe. In reality, they both have nearly identical voting records in the Legislature and both took campaign money from Noe.
Codes of conduct like this are notoriously hard to enforce. A party code would have a better chance of working because, as a private entity, the Republican Party is not bound by the First Amendment (yes, I know, when they are in charge Republicans don't feel bound by the First Amendment either. But don't lose the larger point.) Still and all, the Repubs face an uphill battle making this stick.
Here's how they intend to go about it:
- [Party Deputy Chair Kevin] DeWine will develop a code of conduct, which the central committee will discuss at its February meeting.
- He also will create a list of vendors who will be asked to pledge to abide by that code.
- “We want the process to be transparent,” DeWine said. “This will be (our) seal of approval to make sure every dollar is used to elect Republicans.”
Meanwhile, the GateHouse story references the primary for the open seat in the Fourteenth as a possible test case for the Code:
- Another battle between Republicans is brewing in the March 4 primary in the 16th Congressional District, now occupied by U.S. Ralph Regula, R-Bethlehem Township. Regula plans to retire at the end of his term next year.
The two announced Republican candidates are Ashland County Commissioner Matt Miller, who took on Regula in 2006, and State Sen. Kirk Schuring, R-Jackson Township. The filing deadline is Jan. 4.
The Republicans dodged a bullet when Wooster State Sen. Ron Amstutz announced he would not run. Amstutz is the sort of movement conservative who would readily call Schuring out as a RINO, and is a nasty piece or work to boot.
As for the Code of Conduct, don't expect its application in a general election any time soon.