Rep. Ryan Smith (R-Bidwell) was elected Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives on Wednesday. After ten deadlocked ballots, Smith was elected by a plurality in the eleventh round. Supreme Court Justice Pat Fischer was on hand to immediately administer the oath of office.
With the Speaker vacancy now filled, the House is returning to the peoples’ business of considering legislation. In the first session under the new Speaker, the House acted on 17 pieces of backlogged legislation.
In his inaugural address, Speaker Smith called on members to “put our divisions aside and honor our commitments to serve the people of Ohio.” He also encouraged members to treat each other with dignity and respect.
You can watch the historic and unprecedented House session on the Ohio Channel. Rep. Bob Cupp (R-Lima) eloquently nominated Smith highlighting his leadership ability, noting that he helped to deliver two balanced state budgets as chairman of the powerful House Finance Committee. Cupp praised Smith for being respectful, inclusive, decisive, and candid.
The former Supreme Court of Ohio Justice and veteran legislator also commented: “Weeks of orchestrated rumor, fabricated innuendo and unfounded speculation have done nothing to change what experience has shown – that Ryan Smith is an honorable man.” 6/7/2018