Aftab Pureval drops request for Ohio Supreme Court to delay campaign spending hearing

Aftab Pureval drops request for Ohio Supreme Court to delay campaign spending hearing
Congressional candidate Aftab Pureval speaks Tuesday during a debate with opponent U.S. Rep. Steve Chabot. (Photo: FOX19 NOW/file)

COLUMBUS, OH (FOX19) - Congressional candidate Aftab Pureval’s team is backing off efforts to delay a hearing on his campaign spending this week before the Ohio Elections Commission.

The Democrat is accused of illegally using money from his local Hamilton County Clerk of Courts campaign account to pay for polling used in his federal race against longtime Republican incumbent Steve Chabot.

The congressional race is among many around the nation being closely watched as Election Day nears.

Pureval’s lawyers filed a flurry of motions last week asking the state’s top court and elections board to allow him to focus on the upcoming Nov. 6 general election and testify once it’s over.

On Monday, his team did an abrupt about-face and asked the Ohio Supreme Court to dismiss his request.

Justices acquiesced, and now the elections commission hearing is expected to take place at 10 a.m. Thursday in Columbus. It likely will last throughout the day, ending about 4 p.m.

The Ohio Supreme Court was to rule by Tuesday whether Pureval and his campaign manager, Sarah Topy, had to attend and testify.

Pureval’s lawyers aruged both have full campaign-related schedules and compelling them to testify just five days before the general election would “impose extraordinary burdens on them,” court records show.

Justices were expected to rule against that and concur with a recent decision from a lower court.

The Tenth District of Appeals already rejected a similar request because it would not “result in irreparable injury” or “serve the public interest," according to their decision.

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