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Scare Tactics Invade Energy Bailout Debate

A television ad from Ohioans for Energy Security shows this image of Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Ohioans for Energy Security
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A television ad from Ohioans for Energy Security shows this image of Chinese President Xi Jinping.

In this week's episode of Snollygoster, Ohio's politics podcast from WOSU, hosts Mike Thompson and Steve Brown discuss Ohio’s nuclear power plant bailout and the campaign to dimantle it. Gene Pierce, spokesperson with the group Ohioans Against Corporate Bailouts, joins the show.

Listen to Snollygoster on the WOSU Public Media mobile app, on Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. And make sure to leave a rating and review!

On this week's episode:
Red Scare

If you’ve watched network TV lately, you might think the Chinese army is marching on the Ohio Statehouse. That's because Ohioans For Energy Security, a group backing Ohio’s new nuclear bailout law, has launched ads attacking the effort to repeal it.   

The law adds 85 cents to the monthly electric bill of nearly all Ohio customers. That’ll fund the $150 million a year going to two failing nuclear power plants. The law also lets utilities charge customers to prop up two coal-fired power plants, as well as scraps the state’s green energy benchmarks.

One thing the ad doesn't mention is natural gas, which is the reason for accusations of Chinese influence since Chinese banks have investments in Ohio’s natural gas industry. Ohioans Against Corporate Bailouts, which wants to repeal the law, says there is no Chinese money backing their ballot issue and the ad is dishonest.

The Purge

The Ohio Democratic Party sued to stop the purge of over 235,000 names from Ohio voter registration rolls. This week, a federal judge allowed the purge to go forward. 

The aim of the purge is to remove people who have died or moved from the rolls, but audits done by newspapers and other organizations found hundreds - if not thousands - of voters were on the removal list when they should not have been.

Snollygoster Of The Week

Columbus School Board president Gary Baker and his fellow member Shawna Gibbs were awarded this honor a few weeks ago for using school tax money to attend a conference in Miami even though they are leaving office this year.

Turns out, both departing school board members are going to another conference in Lousiville next month.  The school board approved the travel funds earlier this week. 

If you have a suggestion or comment for the show, email snollygoster@wosu.org.

Mike Thompson spends much of his time correcting people who mispronounce the name of his hometown – Worcester, Massachusetts. Mike studied broadcast journalism at Syracuse University when he was not running in circles – as a distance runner on the SU track team.
Steve Brown grew up in nearby Richwood, Ohio and now lives there with his wife and sons. He started his journalism career as a weekend board operator at WOSU while majoring in journalism at Ohio State, where he also wrote for the student newspaper The Lantern and co-founded the organization Students for Public Broadcasting.
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