Baltimore removed as Judiciary Chair following OWI, weapon arrest - DETAILS

Iowa House Speaker Linda Upmeyer has removed Rep. Chip Baltimore from his position as Chairman of Judiciary following his OWI and Weapons arrest last week. Rep. Zach Nunn takes over immediately.

In a statement, the Speaker said: "Serving as a committee chairman is a privilege that requires a higher level of trust and responsibility. Drinking and driving is unacceptable behavior that endangers the lives of all Iowans who wish to travel our roads safely. Rep. Baltimore’s actions were clearly irresponsible, and he is being held accountable."

Baltimore has issued his own statement: "From the moment I made the horrible decision, I have taken full responsibility for it and accepted any and all consequences resulting from it. Speaker Upmeyer and I have spoken several times over the last few days, and I wholeheartedly agree with and support her decision concerning the chair position of the House Judiciary Committee, as it is the right thing to do. I will work with Chairman Nunn to make the transition as smooth as possible."

He was arrested on Friday at 5.41am in Ames. His blood alcohol level was nearly twice the legal limit and he had a firearm under his seat.

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