- Associated Press - Friday, March 7, 2014

CINCINNATI (AP) - Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine fell ill while at a speaking engagement in Cincinnati and was expected to remain in a hospital for observation Friday night after a bout of vertigo, his office said.

DeWine, 67, was at a “First Friday” luncheon of business and public policy leaders when he felt ill before his scheduled talk, DeWine spokesman Dan Tierney said. An ambulance took him from a downtown restaurant near Fountain Square to The Christ Hospital for evaluation.

DeWine was feeling much better by Friday evening, said his spokeswoman, Lisa Hackley, in a written statement.

She said DeWine was expected to be released Saturday.


“His wife Fran is with him and they want to express thanks to all who have passed along good wishes,” Hackley said.

Tierney said DeWine didn’t lose consciousness.

Hospital officials said they had no information to release on DeWine’s condition.

DeWine was scheduled to speak Friday evening at a Lincoln Day dinner in Delaware County. Also, the online Support Marriage Equality in Ohio group planned a protest Friday in the Columbus suburb of Dublin against DeWine’s defense of a statewide ban on gay marriage.

One of Ohio’s most publicly visible officials, DeWine has made causes of fighting human trafficking and prescription drug abuse and of cracking down on violent offenders. He convened a special grand jury last year to investigate possible other crimes related to the rape of a teenage girl by two Steubenville High School football players, resulting in charges against six people.

A Republican, he is seeking re-election in November. Cincinnati Democrat David Pepper is challenging him for the office.

DeWine is a former U.S. senator, U.S. representative, lieutenant governor and state senator. After losing his U.S. Senate seat to Democrat Sherrod Brown in 2006, DeWine ran successfully for attorney general in 2010 against incumbent Democrat Richard Cordray.

DeWine is a native of Greene County in western Ohio, where he was a prosecutor.

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AP Statehouse Correspondent Julie Carr Smyth and writer Ann Sanner contributed to this report from Columbus.