Thomas Hall Comes Out Squeaky Clean: Ohio Ethics Investigation by Keith Faber shows a great track record and no wrongdoing

It’s a few weeks away from the August 2nd primary for the Ohio Representative election between the incumbent Thomas Hall for the newly drawn up 46th District seat and his challenger Matt King.  And it wouldn’t be a typical election cycle if there wasn’t some kind of dirt being thrown by somebody.  After all, a lot of money gets tossed into the ring from numerous contributors, and they all want to see their pick win the election, and the belief that people can be significantly influenced by finance and sentiment perpetuates a lot of malice.   That is how the typical blood sport of politics works, and what we usually end up with in office, if done well, is the best possible candidate that we can get because of the grueling process.  But when you see bad behavior in that election process, we must talk about it because it shows where the real cracks of a campaign genuinely emerge.  And in the case of Thomas Hall, he is so squeaky clean that any attempts to say otherwise about him come out sounding ridiculously overinflated.  And that’s what emerged from a shot of desperation coming not so much from the challenger for the 46th District, Matt King, but certainly from those who want to use Matt to knock out Thomas from the very high bar he has set because many in politics simply don’t want to live up to that level of measure.  There was some controversy coming out of a group “Ohio News Hotline” that was trying to stir up trouble for Thomas, and an Ohio Ethics Investigation was discussed based on the years 2018 and 2019, hoping that they could dig up something to make Thomas look bad.  In short, there was nothing there, but the elements who wanted to knock off Thomas Hall were trying to stir up trouble, so setting the record straight is mandated.

It had been a good week for Representative Hall, the week after the 4th of July 2022.  I had just reported on how great he did at a local Tea Party meeting where he made an excellent case for why he should be re-elected to a somewhat hostile crowd.  Then on Thursday, he spoke at Lakota schools and did a fantastic job there as well.  Probably too well because Democrats and RINO Republicans who are very uncomfortable with Thomas Hall moving his influence into Liberty Township as the new 46th District is mapped out aren’t comfortable with the strong record of conservative politics Hall represents.  He’s rock-solid in every Republican measure based on his track record, and the NRA just came out with a glowing endorsement of Hall, so plenty of political enemies were stirred up by those two public speeches.  Then on Friday, there was a fund-raiser with several Democrats involved, and they were more than energized to support Matt King, hoping to take down the very conservative Thomas Hall.  Now that’s not unusual.  I know Matt and the King family, and they tend to be solid conservatives.  But Matt is unknown as a politician, so obviously, Democrats are hoping for that variable to help them, so they support King for obvious reasons.  Thomas is a known threat to them as opposed to gaining leverage over someone they might be able to call in favors later because they helped with the campaign.  Sheriff Jones has been working against Thomas because he doesn’t like the strong voting record of Hall, so there some inner Republican theatrics going on as well that have been fueling Democrats to help King gain some steam, much the way Democrats got involved in the governor primary helping put DeWine over the top in that recent election. 

That’s when the timing of the ethics report, done by Keith Faber, became an inflated issue and an anonymous tip attempted to stir up trouble through the Ohio News Hotline, prompting a media hit piece against Thomas Hall.  I also know Keith; I think he’s a good guy too.  Investigations like what his office does, I think, are great because they keep politicians clean.  It’s a good check on the balance of power, and without the Auditors Office from the State there to investigate, there would be much more corruption in politics than there is.  While all this talk was going on, P.G. Sittenfeld in Cincinnati was found guilty of bribery, so these topics were fresh on the minds of the desperate when the contents of the Ohio Ethics Investigation on Hall were made available.  Now here’s where unethical behavior starts to really show itself.  I’ve read the report on Thomas Hall from Keith’s office, which is squeaky clean.  There is nothing bad or disingenuous there at all.  But the radical elements and Democrats who want Hall gone tried to take things out of context to at least create doubt in people who haven’t read the report and never plan to.  Just the mention of an ethics report might be enough to inspire them to make a change from Thomas to King on August 2nd.  As mentioned, the report covered 2018-2019, but it wasn’t released to the public until June 16th, 2022, just a month and a half before the election.  That in itself is more than a bit suspicious. 

The report states that Thomas did not recuse himself as a trustee on matters involving the fire department in Madison Township, where his father, a hero who stopped the school shooting at the school there, was the fire chief.  In those instances, Thomas sought legal counsel on the matter and provided the proper distance required when dealing with financial matters.  But on voting for equipment and supplies for the fire department, he participated with the other trustees under explicit direction from that legal advice.  The report from the auditor simply mentions that it was unusual.  Not that it was inappropriate.  Then the report shows that Madison Township had some late tax filings and negative balances during Thomas’ term.  This was a problem with the fiscal officer they had at the time and was a common problem many trustees face.  Nothing improper, just commonplace management problems.  And with all the digging that the vast resources of Keith Faber’s office could utilize over a lengthy period of time and sit on a desk somewhere for three years until just before the August 2nd election, there turned out to be nothing to see regarding anything improper done by Thomas Hall.  I would propose that the timing of the report’s release and distribution to the public was meant to create doubt in the public to affect the election.  By the time people learned that the report contained no wrongdoing by Thomas Hall, the election would be over, and from the Democrat perspective, hopefully, King would win the election.   For the enemies of Thomas Hall, all they need to do is create doubt which was where the tip to the Ohio News Hotline went out to stir up enough buzz in the final two weeks of the campaign to push some voters maybe away.  The report was and is a last-ditch effort by a political class, both Republicans and Democrats, who don’t want the high measure Thomas Hall has forced them all to live up to.  Very few could go through a Keith Faber Ohio Ethics Investigation and come out as clean as Thomas did.  And that truly scares them.   Another term of Thomas Hall may make it so they can’t compete in the political world ever in the future.  And for voters, that’s very good news indeed.

Rich Hoffman

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