Ohio2006 Blog

News, analysis, and comments on Ohio elections.

Thursday, August 17

Cong. OH-18: Padgett (R) Bankruptcy Could Become Issue

Handpicked successor State Sen. Joy Padgett (R-Coshocton) is already making campaign appearances in her quest to replace her close friend and benefactor, disgraced Rep. Bob Ney (R-Heath), in Ohio's 18th Congressional District. Although BSB is reporting that at least four people have taken out nominating petitions for the September 14 special primary, Padgett must be regarded as the front-runner. Eventually, however, I'm guessing that her recent bankruptcy filings are going to join her ugly smear campaign against former Hezbollah hostage Terry Anderson in her last state senate race, and her ties to Taft and Ney, as stumbling blocks to her candidacy.

Ney's primary opponent, James Brodbelt Harris (R-Zanesville), has jumped on the bankruptcy filings as an issue, sending out an email asserting that "[b]y her million-dollar default to creditors and taxpayers under SBA and other loans, Senator Padgett is professionally unfit and an SBA deadbeat, and thus she is not qualified to seek higher office representing Ohioans and American taxpayers." Stripped of the hyperbole, Harris' description of Padgett's financial troubles is as follows. (I have not independently verified the details.) Padgett and husband Don own Main Office Supply on Main Street in Coshocton, Ohio. In August 2004, during her ugly campaign against Anderson, Padgett and her husband borrowed $737,000 under a loan guarantee program of the U.S. Small Business Administration. In October 2005, right before the deadline for avoiding the stricter provisions of the Republican-imposed bankruptcy overhaul, the business filed for reorganization. As Treasurer of the corporation, Padgett signed the papers and petitioned for bankruptcy on behalf of the company. In June 2006, the bank that holds the SBA loan filed to dismiss the bankruptcy due to the Padgetts' default on post-bankruptcy obligations to the bank, and for unauthorized use of cash collateral. The corporate bankruptcy was dismissed on July 30, depriving it of bankruptcy protections. In the meantime, however, on June 15, 2006, Padgett filed for personal bankruptcy, listing over $1,000,000 of estimated debts and at least 17 creditors, including the State of Ohio and the City of Coshocton.

It's hard to say how much this financial embarrassment will affect Padgett's candidacy. However, it certainly doesn't look good, especially since the corporate bankruptcy was dismissed for failure to fulfill obligations imposed by the bankruptcy court, and her personal bankruptcy is a pending proceeding while she campaigns. No minimizing it as something in the past.

UPDATE: Go read an excellent take on this by Anastasia over at DailyKos -- highly recommended!


At 1:58 PM, Blogger redhorse said...

Yikes, that's quite a burden, eh?

Wonder how she'll try to spin that?

At 4:33 PM, Anonymous Earl said...

This strikes me as one of many issues where voters have a "double standard."

If a Democrat did that the Reactionaries would go BALLISTIC! But when a Goper does it, the electorate shrugs their shoulders.

Right wing voters tend to vote Party and ideology. Democrats and independents have higher standards.

The only exception is that there is a significant chunk of GOP voters who simply will not vote for a person of color, no matter what.

At 7:11 PM, Blogger David said...

The candidates for the September 14th special election are on my local news stations site (wtov9.com). They are:

# Samuel Firman, Coshocton
# John Bennett, Guernsey
# Ralph Applegate, Franklin
# Ray Feikert, Holmes
# Joy Padgett, Coshocton
# James Harris, Muskingham
# Greg Zelenitz, Belmont
# Richard Homrighausen, Tuscarawas

At 9:21 PM, Blogger Yellow Dog Sammy said...

Thanks for the list! Aside from Padgett: Applegate we know from the Democratic primary, Harris from the Republican primary. Feikert is a Holmes County Commissioner, and Homrighausen is Mayor of Dover and a long-time friend of Ney. Zelenitz is on the board of the Ohio National Road Association and the Blaine Bridge Restoration Society. What do we know about Firman or Bennett?

At 9:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I tried googling Firman in various combinations and I couldn't find anything in this century. Bennett is much harder to search for given how common the name is.

Mister Gloom

At 9:57 PM, Blogger redhorse said...

Isn't Firman a university in South Carolina?

At 9:57 PM, Blogger redhorse said...

j/k, of course, I know it's Furman.

At 8:32 AM, Anonymous Ahcuah said...

Hey, did I call it or not?

See my comment to this Aug 12 entry.

At 8:44 AM, Blogger Yellow Dog Sammy said...

Yes, Ahcuah, you certainly did! I remembered your comment when Harris' email arrived, which was why I took the time to struggle through his grandiose verbiage.


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