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The Ohio Statehouse

The Ohio General Assembly is the state legislature of the U.S. state of Ohio. It consists of the 99-member Ohio House of Representatives and the 33-member Ohio Senate. Both houses of the General Assembly meet at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus.

Contents

History

The second constitution of Ohio, effective in 1851, took away the power of the General Assembly to choose the state's executive's officers, granting that right to the voters. A complicated formula apportioned legislators to Ohio counties and the number of seats in the legislative houses varied from year-to-year.

The Ohio Politics Almanac by Michael F. Curtin (Kent State University Press) described apportionment thus:

The new [1851] constitution ... contained a complicated formula for apportionment, the so-called "major fraction rule." Under it, the state's population was divided by 100, with the resulting quotient being the ratio of representation in the House of Representatives. Any county with a population equal to at least half the ratio was entitled to one representative; a county with a population of less than half the ratio was grouped with an adjacent county for districting; a county containing a population of at least one and three-fourths the ratio was entitled to two representatives; a county with a population equal to three times the ratio was entitled to three representatives. To determine Senate districts, a similar procedure was followed; the starting point, however was figured by dividing the state's population by 35. The ratios for the House and Senate and the resulting apportionment was determined by a board consisting of the governor, auditor, and secretary of state.

In 1903, the apportionment system was modified by the Hanna amendment, which also gave the governor veto power over the assembly's acts, which could be overridden by a two-thirds vote of the assembly's houses. The last state constitutional convention, held in 1912, gave the governor a line-item veto, but reduced the supermajority required for overriding the veto to three-fifths. In 1956, a referendum increased the terms of state senators from two to four years.

The Hanna amendment (which guaranteed each county at least one representative and all members elected at large) guaranteed that rural areas of Ohio would dominate the legislature by giving them disproportionate representation. Several decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court in the 1960s, however, mandated apportionment proportional to population. Reapportionment was ordered in 1964. Starting with the 1966 election, the number of seats in the two chambers were fixed at their present numbers of 33 and 99.

Republican activists, led by Fred A. Lennon, began pursuing term limits in the 1980s, in 1992, a referendum set term limits of eight consecutive years -- four consecutive terms in the house and two consecutive terms in the senate. Terms are considered consecutive if they are separated by less than four years. Once serving the limit former members are re-eligible for election to the legislature after four years.

Representative History

Senate

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First District

The First District of the Ohio Senate has historically been located within rural Northwestern Ohio. Currently, it consists of Defiance, Fulton, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Paulding, Putnam, Van Wert and Williams Counties as well as parts of Auglaize County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Howard C. Cook Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1974 8
M. Ben Gaeth Republican January 4, 1975-December 31, 1998 24 Term Limits took effect, term limited
Lynn Wachtmann Republican January 5, 1999-December 31, 2006 8 Term Limited
Steve Buehrer Republican January 2, 2007- 3*

Second District

The Second District encompasses the area outside of Toledo and surrounding counties. It was formerly numbered as the Twelfth District from 1967-1972. Currently it consists of all of Wood County and Erie County, as well as portions of Lucas and Ottawa Counties.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Paul Gillmor Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1988 21 Retired to run for a seat in the United States House of Representatives
Betty Montgomery Republican January 3, 1989-January 2, 1995 6 Resigned to become Ohio Attorney General
Tim Greenwood Republican January 3, 1995-October 5, 1995 10 months Resigned
Steve Yarbrough Republican October 5, 1995-December 31, 1996 1 Did Not Seek Reelection
Bob Latta Republican January 6, 1997-December 31, 2000 4 Did Not Seek Reelection
Randy Gardner Republican January 3, 2001-January 2, 2008 7 Resigned to take a seat in the Ohio House of Representatives
Mark Wagoner Republican January 15, 2008- 2*

Third District

The Third District has long been based within Franklin County. Currently it consists of the eastern portions.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Ted Gray Republican January 3, 1967-February 2, 1994 27 Resigned
Bruce E. Johnson Republican March 1, 1994-September 18, 2001 7 Resigned to become Ohio Lieutenant Governor
David Goodman Republican October 2, 2001 9*

Fourth District

The Fourth District has historically been located north of Cincinnati. Today it consists solely of Butler County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Walter E. Powell Republican January 3, 1967-January 2, 1971 4 Resigned to take a seat in the Ohio House of Representatives.
Donald E. "Buz" Lukens Republican January 3, 1971-January 2, 1987 16 Resigned to take a seat in the Ohio House of Representatives.
Barry Levey Republican January 4, 1987-June 30, 1995 8 Resigned
Scott Nein Republican July 11,1995-December 31, 2004 9 Term Limited
Gary Cates Republican January 3, 2005 5*

Fifth District

The Fifth District has long been based out of Dayton. Today it encompasses the entire city of Dayton, as well as other portions of Montgomery County, all of Miami County and portions of Darke County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Clara Weisenborn Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1974 7 Lost Re-Election
Neal Zimmers Democrat January 3, 1975-December 31, 1994 20 Retired
Rhine McLin Democrat January 3, 1995-December 1, 2001 6 Resigned to become Mayor of Dayton, Ohio
Tom Roberts Democrat January 9, 2002-February 28, 2009 7 Resigned to become a member of the Ohio Civil Rights Commission.
Fred Strahorn Democrat March 31, 2009 1*

Seventh District

The Seventh District is historically based out of eastern Cincinnati. Today, it encompasses the entirety of Warren County as well as the far eastern portions of Hamilton County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Michael Maloney Republican January 3, 1967-August 14, 1978 9 Resigned
Richard Finan Republican September 14, 1978-December 31, 2002 24 Term-Limited
Bob Schuler Republican January 6, 2003-June 19, 2009 6 Died
Shannon Jones Republican August 11, 2009- 1*

Eighth District

The Eighth District has long been based within the western part of Hamilton County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Stanley Aronoff Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1996 30 Term Limited
Lou Blessing Republican January 6, 1997-December 31, 2004 8 Term Limited
Patricia Clancy Republican January 3, 2005-October 9, 2007 2 Resigned
Bill Seitz Republican October 10, 2007- 3*

Ninth District

The Ninth District has historically encompassed portions of Cincinnati, Ohio. Presently, it encompasses all of Cincinnati, as well as other portions of Hamilton County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Calvin C. Johnson Democrat January 3, 1967-February 9, 1970 3 Resigned.
Bill Bowen Democrat February 11, 1970-December 31, 1994 24 Retired
Janet C. Howard Republican January 3, 1995-December 31, 1998 4 Lost Re-Election
Mark Mallory Democrat January 5, 1999-December 1, 2005 6 Resigns to become mayor of Cincinnati, Ohio
Eric Kearney Democrat December 6, 2005- 5

Tenth District

The Tenth District historically has covered South-Central Ohio, and is generally based out of Springfield. Currently it covers the entirety of Clark, Greene and Madison Counties.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Max Dennis Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1976 10 Lost Re-Election
John Mahoney Democrat January 3, 1977-December 31, 1980 4 Lost Re-Election
Mike DeWine Republican January 3, 1981-December 13, 1982 2 Resigned to take a seat in the United States House of Representatives
Dave Hobson Republican December 13, 1982-January 3, 1991 9 Resigned to take a seat in the United States House of Representatives
Merle G. Kearns Republican January 3, 1991-December 31, 2000 9 Term-Limited
Steve Austria Republican January 3, 2001-December 31, 2008 8 Term-Limited
Chris Widener Republican January 6, 2009- 1*

Eleventh District

The Eleventh District has historically been based out of Toledo. Currently it represents Toledo and other portions of Lucas County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Frank W. King Democrat January 3, 1967-January 13, 1969 2 Resigned
Marigene Valiquette Democrat January 14, 1969-December 31, 1986 17 Retired
Linda J. Furney Democrat January 2, 1987-December 31, 2002 16 Term-Limited
Teresa Fedor Democrat January 3, 2003- 7

Thirteenth District

The Thirteenth District has historically been based out of Lorain. Currently, it is comprised of all of Lorain County, all of Huron County, and a portion of Seneca County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Harry Jump Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1968 2 Did Not Seek Reelection
Robert J. Corts Republican January 3, 1969-December 31, 1974 5 Lost Reelection
Don Pease Democrat January 3, 1975-January 3, 1977 2 Resigned to take a seat in the United States House of Representatives
Ronald Nabowski Democrat January 3, 1977-December 31, 1982 6 Did not seek Reelection
Alan Zaleski Democrat January 3, 1983-December 31, 1998 16 Term Limited
Jeff Armbruster Republican January 5, 1999-December 31, 2006 8 Term Limited
Sue Morano Democrat January 3, 2007- 3*

Fifteenth District

The Fifteenth District has generally encompassed portions of Columbus. Today, it covers much of the city as well as other portions of Franklin County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
John W. Bowen Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1970 4 Lost Reelection
Jerry O'Shaughnessy Democrat January 5, 1971-August 23, 1972 1 Died
Robert O'Shaughnessy Democrat October 2, 1972-December 31, 1978 7 Lost Reelection
John Kasich Republican January 3, 1979-December 31, 1982 4 Won a seat in the United States House of Representatives
Richard Pfeiffer Democrat January 3, 1983-April 21, 1992 9 Resigned to take a seat on the Franklin County Municipal Court
Ben Espy Democrat April 21, 1992-December 31, 2002 10 Term Limited
Ray Miller Democrat January 6, 2003- 7*

Sixteenth District

The Sixteenth District has historically been incorporated of parts of Franklin County. Currently it consists of the western portions of the county, including Upper Arlington, Dublin, Hilliard, and Grandview.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Bob Shaw Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1972 6 Lost Reelection
Donald L. Woodland Democrat January 3, 1973-December 31, 1976 4 Did Not Seek Reelection
Michael Schwarzwalder Democrat January 3, 1977-December 31, 1984 8 Lost Reelection
Eugene J. Watts Republican January 3, 1985-December 31, 2000 16 Term Limited
Priscilla D. Mead Republican January 3, 2001-December 31, 2002 2 Resigned
Steve Stivers Republican January 6, 2003-December 31, 2008 6 Did Not Seek Reelection
Jim Hughes Republican January 5, 2009- 1*

Seventeenth District

The Seventeenth District has long been based out of Southern Ohio. Currently, it consists of Clinton, Fayette, Gallia, HIghland and Jackson Counties, part of Lawrence County, party of Pickaway County, as well as Pike, Ross and Vinton Counties.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Harry Armstrong Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1974 8 Did Not Seek Reelection
Oakley C. Collins Republican January 3, 1975-December 31, 1986 12 Lost Reelection
Jan Michael Long Democrat January 2, 1987-February 8, 1997 10 Resigned to take a seat on the Pickaway County Probate Court
Michael Shoemaker Democrat February 5, 1997-December 31, 2002 6 Lost Reelection
John Carey Republican January 6, 2003- 7*

Twentieth District

The Twentieth District has long been based within Southeastern Ohio. Currently, it consists of Athens, Coshocton, Guernsey, Meigs, Monroe, Morgan, Muskingum, Noble, and Washington Counties.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Tom V. Moorehead Republican January 3, 1967-December 31, 1968 2 Lost Reelection
Robert Secrest Democrat January 3, 1969-December 31, 1976 8 Lost Reelection
Sam Speck Republican January 3, 1977-December 2, 1983 7 Resigned
Bob Ney Republican January 10, 1984-January 3, 1995 11 Resigned to take a seat in the United States House of Representatives
James E. Carnes Republican January 3, 1995-January 6, 2004 9 Resigned
Joy Padgett Republican January 6, 2004-December 31, 2008 5 Did Not Seek Reelection
Jimmy Stewart Republican January 5, 2009- 1*

Thirty Third District

Historically, the Thirty Third District has been based out of Mahoning County, centered on Youngstown. However, it has grown within the past twenty years to include portions of Stark and Tuscarawas Counties as well as all of Carroll County.

Senator Party Term Tenure Notes
Charles J. Carney Democrat January 3, 1967-November 30, 1970 3 Resigned to take a seat in the United States House of Representatives
Harry Meshel Democrat January 3, 1971-April 13, 1993 22 Resigned to become leader of the Ohio Democratic Party
Joseph Vukovich Democrat April 21, 1993-February 5, 1997 4 Resigned to become judge on Ohio Seventh District Court of Appeals
Bob Hagan Democrat February 5, 1997-December 31, 2006 10 Term-Limited
John Boccieri Democrat January 2, 2007-December 31, 2008 2 Resigned to take a seat in the United States House of Representatives
Joe Schiavoni Democrat January 5, 2009- 1*

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