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SoS Husted blasted for Betras rejection

By Bertram de Souza (Contact)

Published October 3, 2011

Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted’s decision not to follow the recommendation of the Mahoning County Democratic Party’s executive committee and appoint party Chairman David Betras to the county board of elections has triggered a verbal lashing from a long-time Republican Party operative.

Dr. William Binning, former chairman of the county GOP and former member of the elections board — he was appointed and reappointed by Democratic secretaries of state — sent this writer a no-holds-barred e-mail lashing out at Husted. Binning is a veteran of Republican Party politics and was a member of the late Gov. James A. Rhodes’ campaign inner circle. His roots in the GOP run deep, which is why his criticism of the secretary of state’s decision is noteworthy.

Here’s what he said in his e-mail:

“As a long time Republican Party operative (no longer) and a student and advocate for strong political parties, I urge the Secretary of State to reconsider Dave Betras' appt to the MC bd of elections.  The Party committee is given power in the Ohio revised code to recommend someone to represent them on the Bd of elections to see the other party does not engage in chicanery. The appt by the Sec of State is perfunctory, unless there is evidence of criminal wrongdoing.  This judgmental action by the Sec of State started with Secretary Brunner when she held back on Alex Arshinkoff appt as a GOP appt, (a long time opponent and rival of mine in Republican party wars.)  I think she exceeded her authority and discretion, it was later revealed in depositions she was conspiring with Arshinkoff''s rivals in the local treacherous Summit (County) GOP. Arshinkoff was/is one of the most talented GOP leaders in Ohio and i hope that was not the reason she refused to appt him to weaken the Republican party because Alex did not meet the wimp wrist test.

“In the case of bombastic Dave he has given new life to the Mahoning Dems and has every reason to claim a seat on the Bd and the Dems should feel comfortable, he will protect their interest and not sing la de da with the other party (my party). The fact that he served as the disgraced Marc Dann's treasurer, is insufficient, there has never been any allegations nor charges Betras did anything wrong so there is no evidence on the face of it for denial. Furthermore he is in good standing with the Bar Assoc which suggest there have not been any significant ethics charges brought against him. (Like some of the do gooders who recently influenced that party).  The current GOP Secretary of State needs to reconsider and appoint bombastic Dave to the of MC Bd of Elections. These recent secretary of states are damaging and weakening the local political parties and need to back off. I hope the current Sec of State, who I voted for and see as an up and comer, will reconsider and not spend time busting political parties, which are already too weak and have lost their influence to shadow committees, a result of FEC v. Citizens United —those are the groups he should be going after.”

Binning, former chairman of Youngstown State University’s political science department, adds that if Husted has stronger evidence against Betras in his file he should “give it to the public.”

Yes, Mr. Secretary of State, the people of the Mahoning Valley deserve to know what evidence you have of Betras’ illegal activities while he served as the treasurer of Marc Dann’s attorney general transition team.


1saddad(655 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

The Board of Elections is half Republican and half Democratic. The even split is to provide a check and balance that ensures fair elections. Dr. Binning is correct when he mentions the interests of the Democrats. The Republicans should not be allowed to interfer with the choice of a Democratic member. Betras has not been charged or prosecuted for any offense that would be disqualifying. Husted's acts are just more of the same unprecedented heavy handedness Republicans of today think they can get away with. Husted is a putz

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2ipaidattention(68 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

If the party is so confident in it's ability to have this overturned they should tell the secretary of state's office they can appoint any active democrat to the board and they'll remove him/her through the court process. Suggesting another option to Husted also suggests that you are "incompetent" and unconfident in your ability to have the decision overturned.

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3Tony_A(13 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Yes, the Chairman of the Democratic Party should have a seat on the Board of Elections. The real problem is that David Betras should not be the chairman.

Just as the Oakhill charges were dropped due to the feds not wanting to give up what they have, there is a behind the scenes investigation going on with Betras.

Unless you are Bertram de Souza, all it takes is 5 minutes of investigating and you can find plenty of dirt on Betras. It’s not hard to find some of this stuff out since blowhard Dave flaunts his digressions. I'm sure Husted did more than 5 minutes of investigating and is happy to take this shot at someone who is trying to be something he is not, a politician.

There are many “real” democrats in Mahoning County that can sit on the Board and do a good job for the community, it’s time for the Betras era to come to an end.

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4jwhitehawke(110 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Betras took a leave of absence to become treasurer for his pal Marc Dann. There'[s no way (attorney) Betras can deny he didn't know where 'discretionary' money was going. I expect there is alot more Husted knows about Betras.......and I don't expect Betras to persue this decision because he KNOWS it.
Betras may be king in the valley, but Ohioans don't want valley politics in the state's affairs.

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5db(280 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Betras is the perfect posterboy for the Valley Dems. Corrupt, lying, laughed at, and without respect among his peers. If he truly was innocent as Marc Dann's treasurer, it proves that he is also totally incompetent. One more insult to the Valley in Columbus.

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6block50(128 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Jessiedavid, you are so ignorant and unaware, you can't even spell the name of Dr Binning. You have no business posting other than to show the ignorance of the great unwashed of this Valley.

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7ghostofjohnyoung(163 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

We should demand that all the files and background material on Betras be made open and available to the public.

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