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The Statehouse News Bureau provides educational, comprehensive coverage of legislation, elections, issues and other activities surrounding the Statehouse to Ohio's public radio and television stations.

Another Ohio Lawmaker Is Sidelined By COVID-19

Rep Jon Cross at Ohio Statehouse [Karen Kasler Statehouse News Bureau]
Rep Jon Cross at Ohio Statehouse

Another Ohio state representative is isolating himself, awaiting results from a COVID test.

Rep. Jon Cross’s wife has tested positive with COVID and he thinks there’s a good chance he has it too. 

Cross (R-Kenton) said he was ill with a low-grade fever, body aches and a loss of smell last weekend when he and his wife were tested. Her test came back positive but he is still waiting for results. Cross said he’s feeling better as of Friday and is missing being at the House session. He has told Ohio House Speaker Bob Cupp he’d still come in if there was a close vote on something important.

“If there is a critical vote needed, I would make my way down to vote if that vote is needed but the protocols have to be in place on how to keep everybody safe. I don’t know how they do that," Cross said.  

Cross has been an outspoken opponent of Gov. Mike DeWine's health orders related to coronavirus. Cross issued this post on his Facebook page in June:

Since then, he has also downplayed the importance of wearing masks

 In August, when rules came out requiring Ohio teachers and students to wear masks, Cross took to Facebook again:

When asked whether his stance on masks has changed because of his personal experience with the coronavirus, Cross said his position has been misunderstood. He's not against wearing masks in businesses that ask him to do so, he said, and he isn't opposed to wearing masks around others who request it. But he said he remains adamantly opposed to a statewide mask order imposed by the government.

Several lawmakers are absent from the Ohio legislature right now due to COVID-19. Some have said they believed they were infected by other state lawmakers who refuse to wear masks while working in legislative offices or on the floor of the Ohio House and Senate. At least two lawmakers been hospitalized within the past week with complications from the coronavirus. Others are recovering at home. And at least one state senator says they've been infected a second time. 

Copyright 2020 The Statehouse News Bureau. To see more, visit The Statehouse News Bureau.