Five Republicans Sue Ohio Republican Party Chairman Robert Paduchik Over $3 Million in Missing Funds, Whistleblower Retaliation
For Immediate Release
November 30th, 2021
Columbus, Ohio — Today, five Republican plaintiffs filed a lawsuit against Ohio Republican Party (ORP) Chairman Robert Paduchik, accusing him of misreporting over $3 million in missing funds without adequate explanation, among other violations. In an attempt to protect and preserve the ORP, the plaintiffs demand a jury trial and accountability from Paduchik and other party leaders.
Filed in the Franklin County Common Pleas Court, the lawsuit can be found at ORPAccountability.com. Prior to filing the lawsuit, the plaintiffs sent Paduchik a formal demand letter, asking him to remedy his improper conduct, but to no avail.
The lawsuit’s named plaintiffs include Mark Bainbridge, JoAnn Campbell, Joe Miller, Laura Rosenberger, and Denise Verdi. In violation of party bylaws, all five plaintiffs were removed from their respective ORP subcommittee positions by Paduchik in recent months, as a result of retaliation for questioning his failed leadership and financial mismanagement.
Among other findings, the plaintiffs detail significant funds that have gone missing from ORP financial statements without adequate explanation, including but not limited to $1.7 million that disappeared in 2017, $437,000 in 2019, $638,000 in “Accounts Receivable” that were established in 2017 and 2018 and then written off in 2021, and $271,000 this year—a total of more than $3 million. Furthermore, the plaintiffs claim Paduchik wrongly supported candidates who were unendorsed by the ORP and improperly reorganized ORP leadership after complaints were raised about his chairmanship. Also named in the lawsuit is ORP Treasurer Dave Johnson, who was responsible for overseeing the unexplained missing funds.
Demanding a jury trial, the plaintiffs urge the Court to order Paduchik and Johnson to inspect ORP’s books and records, in addition to executing an accounting and audit that may determine the whereabouts of the missing funds. The plaintiffs also request that the Court order the defendants to reinstate them to their subcommittee positions, following their inappropriate removal.
“After years of failure and millions of dollars gone missing, it’s time for new leadership at the Ohio Republican Party,” said Rosenberger. “As proud Republicans who believe in fiscal conservatism, we won’t rest until Robert Paduchik and his enablers answer for their utter ineptitude and abandon the positions of power they never should’ve had. The millions of Republicans across our state deserve accountability and we are demanding it on their behalf. The Ohio Republican Party needs to be saved from within.”