Gov. Mike DeWine, a lifelong Miami Valley resident, said he doesn’t believe there is a “culture of corruption” in Dayton area politics.
“I really don’t. There are other parts of the state where we have seen it more,” said DeWine, who has been in local, state and federal politics since the 1970s. “I don’t have any way to judge whether there is a culture of corruption or not. There are bad people in public office, just like there are bad people in every other profession. And we got to go after them and get rid of them.”
Speaking with the Dayton Daily News on Wednesday, the governor said, however, that public corruption’s price tag is a loss of confidence in government and in elected officials by the public.
“In our system of government, we depend upon there being a trust and that trust is broken whenever you see someone who is involved in public corruption,” he said.
He noted that in his eight year run as Ohio attorney general, his staff prosecuted dozens of public corruption cases.
“There is tens of thousands of public officials out there and a small number of them are involved in corruption. But when they are involved in corruption, it’s very important for us to go after them and carve that cancer out and deal with it,” DeWine said.
The four indictments made public Tuesday involve four African-American men, each of whom have entered not guilty pleas in federal court. When asked if there are issues of fairness or race, the governor said that investigators follow the facts and evidence.
“I don’t have any evidence that anybody is being targeted because of their race,” he said.
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