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Thus ends a contentious and embarrassing weeks-long struggle to elect a new Ohio House speaker after the resignation of Rep. Cliff Rosenberger, who is being investigated by the FBI on corruption charges. The protracted impasse arose because Ryan Smith, who was elected speaker today, has close ties with Rosenberger, sharing a luxury condo (which may have been paid for by a GOP mega-donor) with the former speaker. Smith's opponents argued that he may also be brought up on corruption charges and many refused to vote for him, hoping to avoid further scandal in the House, which has been the subject of almost non-stop scandals over the past year.

Expect more of the same under the leadership of the new speaker. These folks in the so-called Ohio mafia in Columbus protect their own.

In addition, conservatives who refused to vote for Smith will be treated as known enemies -- which means there's little hope the real conservatives in Columbus will have the opportunity to advance a conservative agenda in the coming months.