State Rep. Keller’s Office Receives Numerous Death Threats After Her Comments About the Dayton Shooting


Ohio State Rep. Candice Keller’s (R-Middletown) office has received thousands of voicemails since her Facebook post blaming the recent mass shootings on the destruction of the traditional family went viral. She was told two death threats were substantiated and 15 more were being investigated.

Dan Lay, the Sergeant at Arms for the Ohio House of Representatives, would only confirm “threats” and “very derogatory remarks” in the voice mails he’d listened to thus far. Keller was encouraged to stay on lockdown.

Some calls for Keller’s resignation came from her own party on Monday, including State Republican Party Chair Jane Timken and Keller’s county sheriff, Richard K. Jones.

The Sheriff continued his assault on Keller on Twitter, retweeting anti-Keller tweets from Democratic Mayor Nan Whaley and the Butler County Democratic Party as well as numerous tweets with negative articles about Keller. Some Ohioans have begun pushing back.

One Cincinnati-area resident told the Sheriff on Twitter, “Has it occurred to you that your continued tweets and retweets might be endangering the life of one of your constituents? We get it, you want Candice to resign. But if something happens to her you personally are responsible Sherrif [sic].”

“It’s really encouraging, in spite of the negative press and establishment Republican comments, that support has been pouring in as well,” Keller told The Ohio Star. “We had requests for 1,000 yard signs yesterday after the story broke. And donations for my State Senate campaign have tripled.”

She also shared that President Ronald Reagan’s Education Secretary, Bill Bennett, called to lend her his support. Other high-ranking Republicans in the state told The Ohio Star that they had done the same.

Keller chose to attend the Ohio Women for Liberty event Tuesday evening, featuring Congressmen Jim Jordan (R-04-OH) and Warren Davidson (R-08-OH). She felt safe with nearly 20 secret service in attendance. Club President Carol Sutter introduced her.

“People at this forum tonight were extremely receptive and very supportive,” Keller shared, encouraged. “They whistled and cheered when I stood up!”

More support came from We the People Convention President Tom Zawistowski. He called for Ohio Republican Party Chair Jane Timken’s resignation in light of her failure to support Keller and “for not standing up for the Republican Party Platform and Republican voters.”

Zawistowski said in his press release:

Jane Timken is derelict in her duty as ORP Chairman and completely out of line calling for Republican Representative Candice Keller to resign. It is Timken who should resign, not Keller. Jane Timken has told me herself in the past that her job is to “defend Republicans” no matter how bad they act, when I have challenged her to sanction or not support for re-election people like John Kasich and Rob Portman who have lied to their voters and gone against the National Republican Party Platform. Now all of a sudden, Jane, the hypocrite, decides that her job isn’t to defend Republicans, particularly ones like Candice Keller whose post represents what most American’s believe and nearly everything that is in the Republican Party Platform that the ORP adopted as its own. Apparently the Chairman only defends certain Republicans who do not represent the views of the people in their districts, and do not really believe in Republican Party values and principles, but just say things so people will like them and vote for them.”

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Beth Lear is a reporter at The Ohio Star.  Follow Beth on Twitter.  Email tips to [email protected].
Background Photo “Ohio Statehouse” by Alexander Smith. CC BY-SA 3.0.







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  1. […] The Ohio Star confirmed Wednesday that Keller has received death threats in response to her comments, two of which were substantiated while 15 others were being investigated. Dan Lay, the sergeant at arms for the Ohio House, confirmed with The Ohio Star that there were “threats” and “very dangerous remarks” directed at Keller. […]