Ohio GOP chair calls for Rep. Candice Keller to quit over Dayton shooting remarks

By Catherine Candisky
The Columbus Dispatch

Ohio Republican Party Chair Jane Timken is urging the GOP’s Candice Keller to resign from her state House seat because of her “shocking and utterly unjustifiable” remarks about mass shootings over the weekend in Dayton and El Paso.

Keller, of Middletown, drew widespread criticism after she blamed the LGBTQ community, “drag queen advocates,” marijuana, video games, “snowflake” anti-Trumpers, former President Barack Obama, congressional Democrats and others for the attacks that left 32 dead.

Timken said in a statement: “While our nation was in utter shock over the acts of violence in El Paso and Dayton, Republican State Representative Candice Keller took to social media to state why she thought these acts were happening. Candice Keller’s Facebook post was shocking and utterly unjustifiable.

“Our nation is reeling from these senseless acts of violence, and public servants should be working to bring our communities together, not promoting divisiveness. I am calling on Candice Keller to resign.”

Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones, a Republican, tweeted: “Candice Keller should resign at once. Shame. Shame.”

Republican Attorney General Dave Yost joined the condemnation of the GOP legislator, tweeting “No, m’am. The blame belongs to the evil man who killed those people.”

Middletown Police Chief Rodney Muterspaw also distanced himself from Keller.

“I was born in Middletown, raised in Middletown, live in Middletown. This isn’t Middletown. We’ve gotten all kinds of responses to this, and please understand, our city is a diverse, hardworking, genuine caring city that does some great things. This is one person’s opinion only,” Muterspaw tweeted.

Drag queen Nina West got into the act, tweeting: “Ms. Keller, your time is up. RESIGN.”

Keller has drawn national attention after her Facebook post, which she since deleted It said in part: “After every mass shooting, the liberals start the blame game. Why not place the blame where it belongs?”

Responding to Timken’s remarks, Keller, who is running for the state Senate next year, said in a statement to The Cincinnati Enquirer: “Establishment moderates have never been fans of mine because I ran against their endorsement and won. As the only conservative in this race, I will be taking my Senate campaign to the voters to decide.”

This is not the first time that Keller has been criticized for remarks following a mass shooting. Keller told gun rights advocates in 2018 that survivors of the attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, who were calling for gun control should be dismissed

Keller told a Statehouse gun-rights rally: “A month ago, we weren’t really having this conversation, and all of a sudden, a 15-year-old on television who would just as soon be eating Doritos and playing video games wants to tell me that my Constitution needs to be changed. Really?”


Fact Sheet: Hunger and Poverty in the African American Community

Fact Sheet: Hunger and Poverty in the African American Community

September 30, 2018
Almost 50 percent of all black children younger than 6 live in poverty. Photo: Joe Molieri / Bread for the World

While hunger and poverty declined among African Americans in 2017 (most recent available data), food insecurity has still not dropped enough this past year to match the one percent increase African Americans saw in 2016.

Consequently, an additional 56,0001 African Americans are still food insecure compared to 2015 numbers. While this is lower than the 187,000 additional African Americans who fell into hunger in 2016, targeted policies that prioritize racial and gender equity need to be implemented to reduce hunger at faster rates.

The higher rates of poverty and hunger among African Americans are direct results of systemic inequity through racial and gender discrimination. While the United States has an overall poverty rate of 12.3 percent, according to the U.S. Census, within the African American community, the poverty rate is 21.2 percent. This rate is even higher in African American female-headed households at 30.3 percent.

African Americans are two times as likely as whites to face very low food security


Federal Poverty Level Guidelines and Chart

2019 Federal Poverty Guidelines Chart

HHS issues poverty guidelines for each household size. For example, the poverty level for a household of four is an annual income of $25,750. To get the poverty level for larger families, add $4,420 for each additional person in the household. For smaller families, subtract $4,420 per person. Guidelines for Alaska and Hawaii are higher since it’s more expensive to live there. The chart below calculates it for you.

The Poverty Level and Obamacare

In October 2013, the poverty level became relevant to millions more Americans. That’s when the health insurance exchanges for Obamacare opened for enrollment. Those making 400% or less of the poverty level became eligible for tax credits to help pay insurance costs. As there are varying levels for different household sizes, see whether you qualify to save on monthly premiums.

Those making 138% or less of the poverty level became eligible for Medicaid. Specific eligibility depends on each particular state. Applicants find out if they are eligible when they apply on the exchanges. Articles such as the “Obamacare Summary” and “How Will Obamacare Affect Me?” provide more information.