The investigation found that Ohio state lawmaker's hostility deserved legislative sanctions.

Columbus, Ohio — House Democratic leadership withdrew the Ohio legislator from committees and prohibited him from contacting staff due to an alleged pattern of "erratic and abusive behavior," according to an independent state-ordered investigation. The lawmaker's punishment was appropriate.

Democratic Representative Elliot Forhan (Cleveland region) was accused of engaging in conflicts with fellow legislators, residents, and lobbyists throughout the course of the previous year, according to the probe.  

Multiple witnesses lent credence to these claims. Republican Attorney General Dave Yost appointed a Columbus law firm to conduct the study at the leaders' request.  

After the charges surfaced in November, House Minority Leader C. Allison Russo prohibited Forhan from communicating with interns, pages, and Democratic legislative assistants and stripped him of all committee responsibilities. While he was at the Statehouse, he was also compelled to be accompanied by a sergeant-at-arms of the House.  

At least twice, Forhan reportedly yelled at the sergeant-at-arms or one of his subordinates, showed up unannounced at the Statehouse and a neighboring legislative office building, and failed to comply with the latter clause on multiple occasions.  

According to the report, if Forhan's actions had gone unchecked, they would have "posed a credible risk of escalating to violence or violent conduct," which would have been a major setback for the Ohio House and its image. It did say, though, that thus far Forhan's behavior "do not warrant his removal from office,"

According to Forhan, who spoke with, the probe is a "sham" because it fails to prove that his actions amounted to "violence or violent conduct," but rather merely suggests the possibility of such behavior in the future, which he also disputes.  

Last month, Forhan lost the Democratic primary and came in third place overall; he was elected to his first term in 2022. His term is set to conclude at the end of the year.  

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