Ohio2006 Blog

News, analysis, and comments on Ohio elections.

Friday, September 15

Cong OH-18: Ney (R) to Plead Guilty; Ney Acolyte Padgett (R) Wins Primary

As reported in the Chillicothe Gazette here, disgraced former 18th District Congressman Bob Ney (R-Heath) is expected to plead guilty as early as today to at least one criminal charge in the congressional corruption investigation centering on convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Republican officials made the announcment last night, after it was too late to affect voting in yesterday's special primary election. Ney announced earlier this summer he would not seek re-election, although continuing to deny any wrongdoing. There is no word on whether Ney will resign his seat. One official indicated that the criminal charge to which he will plead is filing a false disclosure report with the House of Representatives.

Meanwhile, Ney's handpicked successor State Sen. Joy Padgett (R-Coschocton) handily won with 49% of vote in a special primary marked by miniscule turnout.

For example, only 887 of the 5,925 registered Republicans in Ross County voted, a turnout of 15%. It was expected turnout would be low, but the actual turnout "was lower than you could imagine," said Nancy Bell, director of the Ross County Board of Elections. "We had one precinct with no votes."

Angela Guyadeen, Communications Director of the congressional campaign of City Law Director Zack Space (D-Dover), said she wasn't surprised by the low turnout. "It's time for a change," Guyadeen said. "The 18th district people are on board with a new direction and new priorities. Zack Space has those priorities."

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