JULIE CARR SMYTH
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Tension was thick in the air. After 10 consecutive votes in which another man had garnered more support than Larry Householder's favored candidate to be the next Ohio House speaker, Householder leaned back quietly in his chair, arms confidently propped behind his head.
As usual, he was playing the long game.
The Republican now accused in a $60 million federal bribery probe had contributed to a monthslong impasse over the speakership that brought Ohio lawmaking to a standstill in 2018 and left a trail of intimidated, disheartened representatives in its path.
The previous House speaker had resigned amid scandal. Householder wanted a proxy in the job until he could run for the full two-year term himself a few months later. Even i