From Speaker of the Ohio House Bill Batchelder --
COLUMBUS—Speaker of the Ohio House William G. Batchelder (R-Medina) today released the following statement regarding the currently vacant 87th and 98th House district seats, formerly held by Republican Representatives John Carey and Richard Hollington:
“As the Speaker of the House, it is of the utmost importance to me that each House district has appropriate representation and that every Ohioan has a means to make his or her voice heard in Columbus. However, we are also in a situation that gives Ohioans themselves the opportunity to help us choose the appointees to succeed Representatives Carey and Hollington in the Ohio House during this General Assembly.
“Given the fact that multiple Republican candidates have filed for these offices prior to the March primary, voting for which begins in less than two weeks, we feel it would be most prudent given this timeline for the residents of the 87th and 98th districts to decide for themselves who their representatives will be. The Republican Caucus has decided to honor the outcome of the March primary for these two districts and ultimately appoint the winner of each race. We believe waiting until the results of the primary election will give the people of the 87th and 98th districts the most influence over their representation and ensure that their voices are being heard.
However, I also believe it is of the utmost importance that the constituents of these two House districts have a voice during the next few months of what promises to be a busy legislative session before the March primary. Therefore, I have been in contact with local officials in these individual House districts about the possibility of appointing someone to fill these seats until mid-March, so the voices of the constituents in the 87th and 98th House Districts can continue to be uninterrupted.”
Speaker Batchelder intends to make an announcement as details become available in the coming days about any potential appointments to the vacated seats.