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Frank LaRose
LaRose-6 (cropped).JPG
51st Secretary of State of Ohio
Assumed office
January 14, 2019
GovernorMike DeWine
Preceded byJon A. Husted
Member of the Ohio Senate
from the 27th district
In office
January 1, 2011 – January 1, 2019
Preceded byKevin Coughlin
Succeeded byKristina Roegner
Personal details
Born (1979-04-18) April 18, 1979 (age 41)
Akron, Ohio, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)Lauren Kappa
EducationOhio State University (BS)
Military service
Allegiance United States
Branch/service United States Army
Years of service1998–2007[1]
Sergeant first class
Unit101st Airborne Division
19th Special Forces Group[2]
Battles/warsIraq War[citation needed]
Bronze Star Medal ribbon.svg
Bronze Star

Frank LaRose (born April 18, 1979) is an American politician. He is Ohio's secretary of state after serving two terms as a Republican member of the Ohio State Senate from Ohio's 27th Senate district which includes Wayne County as well as portions of Stark and Summit counties.

Early life and military career

LaRose was born at Akron City Hospital and grew up in Copley Township in Summit County, Ohio.[3] His father was the co-owner of a beverage distributor. He has four siblings.[4]

According to his official biography, he is an Eagle Scout.[3] He graduated from Copley High School and enlisted in the United States Army, serving in the 101st Airborne Division and later the U.S. Special Forces (Green Berets). He received the Bronze Star for his service in Iraq with the U.S. Special Forces.[3]

After returning from Iraq, LaRose married Lauren Kappa and graduated from Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in consumer affairs and a minor in business administration.[3]

Ohio Senate career

Ohio Senate election (2010)

LaRose ran for Ohio Senate in 2010 and defeated the Democratic nominee, Summit County Councilman Frank Comunale, in the 27th District, a Democratic-leaning district,[5] by 56.5% to 43.5%.[6][5]

Ohio Senate (2011–2013)

LaRose was sworn into the Ohio Senate in 2011. Governing magazine named him one of "12 State Legislators to Watch in 2014".[7]

LaRose was chair of the Ohio Senate Transportation, Commerce and Workforce Committee, and previously was chair of the State and Local Government Committee and Public Safety, Local Government and Veterans Affairs Committee. He previously was chair of the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review.[8]

LaRose voted for Senate Bill 5 which reduced collective bargaining rights for public workers (including police, firefighters and teachers).[9][10] He said that he agonized over the decision.[11][12] After the bill, which passed by a narrow margin, was repealed by a public referendum, LaRose said, "The voters have made it clear that this was not the course they wished to take."[12] In 2018, LaRose said, "As I look back on [my yes vote on SB5] am I confident I did the right thing? Not necessarily."[9]

LaRose voted for the Congressional Redistricting plan (HB 369)[13] that is now[when?] under legal challenge for gerrymandering.[14]

LaRose voted for SB 72 in 2011, a "late-term abortion" ban, which only affects 1% of abortions,[15] and provided no exception for the mother's health.[16] This was reintroduced as HB 78, which lowered the ban from 24 to 20 weeks, but allowed for an exemption for the woman's health.[17]

Ohio Senate (2014–2018)

LaRose won re-election to his seat in 2014.

LaRose sponsored a bill to eliminate six days of early voting (SB 238) and to prohibit county Board of Elections from sending out unsolicited absentee voting applications.[18] In 2016, he voted for SB 296, introduced by Rep. Bill Seitz, which would require a monetary payment in order to extend voting hours at any vote center for any reason.[19]

By 2014, LaRose had supported five major abortion restriction laws.[20][better source needed] However, the anti-abortion advocacy group Ohio Right to Life endorsed his opponent in the 2014 Republican primary.[21]

Larose deleted anti-abortion webpage
Larose deleted anti-abortion webpage

In 2016, his legislative aide, Jessica Koehler, joined Ohio's Right to Life as its director of legislative affairs.[22]

In 2015, Larose voted for SB 127, a 20-week abortion ban, and cosponsored HB 294, which prohibited public funds for abortion services.

In 2016, Larose supported HB 493, a "heartbeat bill", even though similar bills have been unanimously blocked by the judiciary in several other states.[23] In 2017, he voted for SB 28, which would require the burial or cremation of fetal remains, identical to a similar bill which had been blocked in Texas.[24]

In 2017, he sponsored legislation to prevent women from having abortions after a fetal diagnosis of Down syndrome.[25] He also voted for SB 145, which bans certain abortion procedures.

The American Conservative Union gave him a 100% evaluation for 2017.[citation needed]

Ohio Secretary of State

Candidacy for Secretary of State (2018)

On May 17, 2017, LaRose announced that he would run for Ohio Secretary of State in the 2018 election. LaRose defeated the Democratic state Representative Kathleen Clyde in the general election, 50.9% to 46.7%.[26]

Early during the campaign, LaRose indicated that he would continue a policy of purging voters from voter rolls if those voters had not voted for six consecutive years.[27] Later during the campaign, LaRose said that he did not support the policy. In 2016, LaRose opposed automatic voter registration, but said during the campaign that he supported automatic voter registration. While in Ohio Senate, LaRose sponsored legislation to eliminate Ohio's "Golden Week" (a five-day period when Ohioans could register and vote on the same day); during the 2018 campaign, LaRose said he favored a different same-day registration system.[28]

During the campaign, Clyde supported a shift to a uniform paper ballot system in Ohio; LaRose said he favored the current system where there is a requirement for a paper trail for ballots but all counties are allowed to use their own machines. Clyde called for the adoption of postal voting to replace early in-person voting; LaRose supported the existing system which is a combination of early in-person voting and postal voting.[29]

Ohio's Secretary of State (2019–present)

On January 12, 2019, LaRose was sworn in to serve as Ohio's 51st secretary of state, a four-year term.[30] He was the "first Summit County resident elected Ohio secretary of state in about 166 years".[31] LaRose's offices are in the Continental Plaza high-rise in downtown Columbus.[32]

In April 2019, he observed the Ukrainian presidential election.[33] He promoted simplifying the voter roll purging process in May 2019.[34] He also sought automated voter registration,[35] stating that he was crafting an election reform bill on the issue.[36] In June 2019, he ordered county boards of elections to undergo security upgrades for the 2020 election.[37]

As the top election official in Ohio, in September 2019, LaRose had spent "months working on a project to purge Ohio's inactive voters while also trying to address long-standing criticisms of the controversial process".[38] He was urged to halt a purge of inactive voters by Democrats over errors, but he defended the purge.[39] In September 2019, his office was reviewing Ohio voter registrations that might have been incorrectly deleted in vendor errors, with Democrats suing.[40]

Also in 2019, LaRose defended Ohio's congressional districts, opposed by Democrats for being gerrymandered to favor the Republican representatives in power.[41]

In September 2019, he was released from a February 2019 lawsuit filed by members of environmental activist groups, who "accused elections officials of using unconstitutional tactics that kept certain initiatives from going before voters".[42] That month, he also claimed that Ohio had the most secure elections in the United States.[43]On September 19, 2019, he said he was in the process of distributing $12.8 million Election Assistance Commission funds.[44]

On October 9, 2019, the Ohio Senate unanimously approved Senate Bill 52, which among other things, made LaRose a member of Ohio's Homeland Security Advisory Council.[45]

Personal life

According to his official biography, LaRose lives in Hudson, Ohio, with his wife, Lauren, and their three daughters. He is a board member of the Ohio Historical Society, a junior vice commander of the Fairlawn Veterans of Foreign Wars and a member of the executive board for the Great Trail Council, Boy Scouts of America.[3]


  1. ^ "Frank LaRose LinkedIn". Retrieved June 16, 2016.
  2. ^ "Ohio National Guard Special Forces Soldiers honor fallen comrade by dedicating drop zone in his name". Ohio National Guard. Retrieved June 1, 2016.
  3. ^ a b c d e "Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 2, 2014. Retrieved February 25, 2014.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ Wang, Robert. "LaRose's path to state Senate passed through Iraq". The Repository. Retrieved November 3, 2018.
  5. ^ a b Armon, Rick (November 7, 2010). "First-time candidate pulls off political feat in election". Akron Beacon Journal.
  6. ^ "Amended Official Results". Ohio Secretary of State.
  7. ^ Jacobson, Louis (January 2014). "12 State Legislators to Watch in 2014". Governing: States and Localities.
  8. ^ "Biography". Ohio State Senate. Archived from the original on January 2, 2014. Retrieved February 25, 2014.
  9. ^ a b "Voting concerns, safety key issues in Ohio secretary of state race". Dayton Daily News. Retrieved November 3, 2018.
  10. ^ Warsmith, Stephanie. "LaRose gets flak, thanks for vote on unions". Ohio. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
  11. ^ "Statement From Senator Frank LaRose On Senate Bill 5". The Ohio Senate. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
  12. ^ a b "Akron-area lawmakers respond to SB 5 repeal". Ohio. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
  13. ^ "Ohio congressional districts map, H.B. 369". December 15, 2011.
  14. ^ "Ohio Republican officials lose bid to dismiss gerrymandering suit over congressional map". August 17, 2018.
  15. ^ "Later Abortion". October 13, 2016.
  16. ^ "The Voter's Self Defense System".
  17. ^ "The Voter's Self Defense System".
  18. ^ Jackie Borchardt (February 20, 2014). "Ohio House passes bills to change absentee ballot rules, eliminate six days of early voting".
  19. ^ Jessie Balmert (May 24, 2016). "Bill to require cash for extending voting hours speeds toward Ohio gov". USA Today. Retrieved March 14, 2021.
  20. ^ "Letter: LaRose is pro-life conservative". The Daily Record. April 29, 2014.
  21. ^ Gomez, Henry J. (March 10, 2014). "Ohio Right to Life passes on U.S. Rep. Dave Joyce, endorses primary challenger Matt Lynch". Retrieved August 8, 2020.
    - "Right to Life backs Dems, tea partier, gay in "diverse" endorsements". The Columbus Dispatch. Retrieved August 8, 2020.
  22. ^ "Ohio Right to Life Announces New Director and Staff".
  23. ^ "Ohio's 'heartbeat bill': How conservative judges in other states gutted similar laws". December 8, 2016.
  24. ^ "Federal Judge Buries Unconstitutional Texas Law on the Treatment of Fetal Remains".
  25. ^ "Ohio Senate passes Down syndrome abortion ban". The Cleveland Plain Dealer. November 15, 2017. Retrieved November 27, 2017.
  26. ^ "Ohio Decides - Election Night Reporting". Vote Ohio. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  27. ^ "Kathleen Clyde would end voter purge process if elected Ohio secretary of state; Frank LaRose would not". Retrieved October 6, 2018.
  28. ^ "Did Ohio secretary of state hopeful Frank LaRose change his tune on high-profile voting issues?". Retrieved October 22, 2018.
  29. ^ "Ohio Secretary Of State Candidates Dig Into Lesser Known Voting Issues". WOSU. October 22, 2018. Retrieved October 22, 2018.
  30. ^ "Frank LaRose Prepares to Become Next Secretary of State". WKSU. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  31. ^ "Frank LaRose sworn in as Ohio secretary of state". Record-Courier. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  32. ^ "What's on desks of Ohio's top officials hints at their personalities". The Columbus Dispatch. February 15, 2019.
  33. ^ "Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose back in the U.S. after observing Ukrainian presidential election". April 4, 2019. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  34. ^ "Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose's laudable ideas to make voting easier: editorial". May 2019. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  35. ^ "Secretary of State Frank LaRose, lawmakers to seek automated voter registration, other election reforms". April 24, 2019. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  36. ^ "Sec. of State Frank LaRose proposes automated voter registration in Ohio: Capitol Letter". April 25, 2019. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  37. ^ "Ohio elections chief orders counties to upgrade security". 10TV. June 11, 2019. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  38. ^ "Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose says Ohio's system of maintaining voter registrations rife with problems". September 24, 2019. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  39. ^ "LaRose stands by purge of inactive voters". The Highland County Press. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  40. ^ "Ohio Reviewing More Voter Registrations That May Have Been Incorrectly Deleted". WOSU. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  41. ^
  42. ^ "Judge dismisses Secretary of State Frank LaRose from environmental activists' lawsuit over access to elections ballots". MSN. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  43. ^ "Secretary of State Frank LaRose says Ohio has nation's most secure elections". Sidney Daily News. September 18, 2019. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  44. ^ "Senate breakthrough on election security funding 'encouraging'". StateScoop. September 19, 2019. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  45. ^ "Ohio Senate passes bill to allow patients to learn hospital costs in advance". Canton Repository. Retrieved October 11, 2019.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Jon Husted
Secretary of State of Ohio
This page was last edited on 13 April 2021, at 20:40
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