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Obama's Ohio director resigns county job amid controversy

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There were a few bumps along the way on President Obama’s two-day bus tour through Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Not only did the the president have to grapple with a sobering June jobs report showing unemployment remaining at 8.2 percent and the creation of only 80,000 jobs that month, his campaign’s state director, Greg Schultz, stepped down as Democratic Party county chairman amid an investigation into allegations of improper payments to a fundraiser, according to a report in the Columbus Dispatch.

He remains Mr. Obama’s Ohio state director.

“I’ll defer questions about the specific situation to the Ohio campaign,” Mr. Obama’s campaign spokesman told reporters on Air Force One, noting that she had not discussed the matter with the president.

The same day Mr. Obama was taking a campaign swing through the state, members of his campaign were pressuring Mr. Schultz to resign because they were worried about his ties to fundraiser Melissa Barnhart, the paper reported.

The Dispatch has reported on a series of stories chronicling Mr. Schultz’s decision to hire Ms. Barnhart to be the party’s fundraiser right after he was named party chairman in 2011.

“At about the same time, he started approving payments to Barnhart for undocumented work,” the paper reported. “These payments totaled $20,500. Barnhart said the money was for work done on Columbus City Council races years ago and that three party officials could vouch for her. Those official did not do so when asked by the Dispatch.”

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About the Author

Susan Crabtree

Susan Crabtree is an award-winning investigative reporter with more than 15 years of reporting experience in Washington, D.C. Her reporting about bribery, corruption and conflict-of-interest issues on Capitol Hill has led to several FBI and ethics investigations, as well as consequences for members within their caucuses and at the ballot box. Susan can be reached at scrabtree@washingtontimes.com.

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