Articles from Columbus Dispatch - politics

Ohio police, fire retirees upset by pension fund's insurance change

A retired Ohio fire chief and others in the Ohio Police and Fire Pension Fund who live out of state have to find their own health insurance policies.A former Garfield Heights police officer found that his pension fund stipend to buy coverage will cover only about half of the cost of the premium for him and his spouse.A retired Columbus officer says the company assisting retirees in finding insurance is incompetent; he warns that “inadequate health services could quite literally […]

DeWine said Trump listened 'very carefully' to newly elected governors

WASHINGTON – Joining 12 other newly elected governors at the White House Thursday, Gov.-elect Mike DeWine said President Donald Trump “listened very carefully and was very engaging” as they talked about constructing new roads and bridges, combating drugs, and keeping Lake Erie clean.“There wasn’t much contention in there,” DeWine told Cox TV as he emerged from the White House on his way to meet with administration officials in the Executive […]

Report: Consultants rigged, steered state IT contracts

Two highly-paid state consultants working under no-bid contracts apparently rigged contracts to steer them to one of their companies, according to state investigators.The consultants “may have colluded” to land two contracts paying nearly $469,000, with Ohio Inspector General Randall J. Meyer suggesting in an investigative report that they should be barred from ever again […]

Senate decides 'stand your ground' can wait until next year

One final effort to get a stand-your-ground bill out of the legislature this year evaporated Thursday morning when a Senate committee declined to bring up the bill for a vote.The controversial provision, opposed by prosecutors and law enforcement, would eliminate the state’s duty to retreat, a law that requires someone to seek to escape a confrontation, if possible, before using deadly force.The stand-your-ground provision, which Gov. John Kasich also opposes, […]

Trump: 'I never directed Michael Cohen to break the law'

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is contending he “never directed” longtime lawyer Michael Cohen to break the law. Trump’s tweet Thursday comes a day after Cohen was sentenced to prison for crimes including arranging hush money payments to conceal Trump’s alleged affairs.Cohen and federal prosecutors have said the payments were made at Trump’s direction to influence the 2016 […]

Jose Canseco as Trump chief of staff? Ex-baseball player makes pitch in tweet

NEW YORK— Jose Canseco is ready to take a swing at politics.The former major league slugger has made his pitch for a big job at the White House, tweeting Wednesday to President Donald Trump: “u need a bash brother for Chief if (sic) Staff.”Canseco told his “little buddy” he has “a secret reorg plan already.” He suggested Trump send him a direct message and signed off […]

Pelosi agrees to 4-year limit on speakership

WASHINGTON — Rep. Nancy Pelosi has reached a deal with dissident Democrats to limit herself to four years as speaker, she announced Wednesday, her most-consequential move to date to clinch the votes she needs to win the gavel in January.The agreement, if adopted by Democrats, would almost certainly clear the way for Pelosi, the Democratic leader from California, to reclaim the mantle of first woman to serve in the post that is third in line to the presidency.The plan she […]

Climate talks at risk of failure as US leaves void

KATOWICE, Poland — Global talks to combat climate change risked breaking up with little to show for them, participants said Wednesday, with the hostile U.S. stance on aggressive action leaving a leadership void that other countries have been reluctant or unable to fill.The year’s largest gathering of climate negotiators, with nearly 200 countries represented and 20,000 delegates, is seen as a crucial moment when the world will either commit to ramping up its ambitions to attack […]

Ex-Trump lawyer Michael Cohen gets 3 years in prison

NEW YORK — Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s one-time fixer, was sentenced Wednesday to three years in prison for crimes that included arranging the payment of hush money to conceal his boss’ alleged sexual affairs. Cohen told a judge that he agreed time and again to cover up Trump’s “dirty deeds” out of “blind loyalty.”Separately, the legal and political peril surrounding Trump appeared to deepen when prosecutors announced that another major piece of the investigation […]

Unions telling House Democrats to back Householder for speaker

Some Ohio unions are contacting House Democrats urging them to support Rep. Larry Householder as the next speaker, while the state’s largest business associations are asking House Republicans to schedule a vote.Householder, R-Glenford, and Speaker Ryan Smith, R-Bidwell, have been battling to be elected House speaker for the next two-year session, beginning Jan. 7. Typically, Republicans meet behind closed doors to coalesce around a new leader, so the official vote in January is […]