House GOP Staff Heard Claims, Rumors About Goodman Last Year
More information, including allegations of harassment, is coming out against the now former Rep. Wes Goodman (R-Cardington). Now the top staff leader for House Republicans says they’ve been fielding rumors about Goodman for more than a year but, until this month, there was nothing to act on.
When Wes Goodman was running for a seat in the Ohio House last year, rumors started to circulate that the married, right-wing candidate, who was making a name for himself with his anti-LGBTQ messaging, was gay.
The first time House Republican Chief of Staff Mike Dittoe says he heard anything about this was early last year, when someone wanted the caucus to know about the hypocrisy of Goodman’s message.
“He was disappointed that Rep. Goodman had anti-LGBT rhetoric on his campaign website but was telling us that Candidate Goodman was in fact gay.”
What Dittoe and other House leaders knew, and when, is starting to come out in the aftermath of Goodman’s resignation from the House. Goodman was asked to leave when he was caught conducting “inappropriate conduct” in his state office with another man.
“To allege any sort of cover up is an absolute mischaracterization of the events.”
As Dittoe explains, he would hear rumors of explicit social media messages. And eventually, that included screenshots of a sexually-charged text message conversation between Goodman and an unnamed man. But Dittoe and the House legal team determined that these were not instances that they could act on.
“The person was alleging that Rep. Goodman might be gay and having social media contacts with people outside of his marriage that is not really within our purview our purview is what happens with House staff and personnel within the House.”
Dittoe says Goodman would always deny the claims, adding that they never received allegations that Goodman was engaged in inappropriate behavior with House staff.
Copyright 2017 The Statehouse News Bureau