Ohio2006 Blog

News, analysis, and comments on Ohio elections.

Thursday, September 14

Ohio House Races: News & Notes

Items of interest about various races for the Ohio House of Representatives:

* 7th District: First-term incumbent Rep. Kenny Yuko (D-Richmond Heights) has been endorsed by the Cleveland Plain Dealer over repeat opponent Beverly Valencic (R-Euclid), a former school administrator and city councilwoman, in this district in the northeast suburbs of Cleveland. The editors describe Yuko as a "champion of organized labor" with an "excellent work ethic" and a "genuine concern for working men and women."

* 10th District: Eugene R. Miller (D-Cleveland) has also been endorsed by the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Miller, who has worked on several Congressional campaigns for Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-Cleveland) but has never before sought or held office himself, is opposed by Rosalind McAllister (R-Cleveland). Miller eked out a narrow victory in a crowded primary. The editors note that Miller dropped out of high school but earned a GED and then a college degree, a life story that "uniquely qualifies him to serve as a role model for at-risk youth" and will "enable him to bring missing perspective to important legislative discussions." Incumbent Rep. Shirley Smith (D-Cleveland) is running for the 21st District Ohio Senate seat of term-limited Minority Leader C.J. Prentiss (D-Cleveland Heights).

* 15th District: In another early endorsement, the Cleveland Plain Dealer gives the nod to incumbent Rep. Tim J. DeGeeter (D-Parma) over community activist David C. Fago (R-Parma) in this district in Cleveland's southwest suburbs. The editors praise DeGeeter for having "played a key role in the formation of bipartisan legislation governing matters as diverse as methamphetamine abuse and Internet child pornography." DeGeeter won this seat easily with 67.49% of the vote in 2004.

* 17th District: City Councilman Roger Goudy (D-Solon) lost out on the Cleveland Plain Dealer endorsement to his well-funded opponent, City Councilman Josh Mandel (R-Lyndhurst), in the race to succeed term-limited Rep. Jim Trakas (R-Independence). The editors praise both candidates as "highly qualified" and note that as a career educator and school admininstrator Goudy would "bring great expertise and credibility to the ongoing Statehouse debate over public education," but they pick Mandel based on his youth ("Mandel represents the type of young political leadership Ohio so desperately lacks"). Jill Miller Zimon takes the PD to task for this age discrimination here. The 17th District winds through more than a dozen outer eastern and southeastern suburbs of Cleveland.

* 43rd District: Attorney and former reporter Stephen Dyer (D-Tallmadge) has been pounding the pavement in his campaign against Assistant Prosecutor Christine Croce (R-Green) for the seat of State Auditor candidate Rep. Mary Taylor (R-Green) in this district south of Akron. Now he is injecting a little fun into the campaign season by displaying on his web site photographs of the two pairs of shoes he has worn out visiting thousands of doorsteps, as well as his current pair. Visitors are invited to guess when the new pair will wear out. (The prize? Bragging rights, and the worn-out shoes. Oh, boy!) After guessing the wear-out date, visitors can "learn about Steve’s plans for turning around Ohio and donate to his campaign on the site."

* 46th District: Mark Dansack, a legal assistant who works with injured workers, is calling on incumbent Rep. Mark Wagoner, Jr. (R-Toledo) to introduce legislation to stop the implementation of so-called workers compensation reform law Senate Bill 7 (which Dansack calls the "Taft Corruption Bailout Act") until the full details of fraud, corruption, and waste at the BWC are known. “It’s not bad enough that we have seen the Noe “Coingate” fiasco and the MDL investment losses of over $200 million, but now we are finding out that GOP reforms instituted as a cost-cutting measure in the late 1990’s have actually increased the bureau’s total operating costs at more than twice the rate of inflation,” resulting in roughly $1.6 billion in extra costs. “This gross mismanagement of public funds by these self-described fiscal conservatives speaks volumes about what is wrong in Ohio and has been for the past decade and a half.” Dansack compares the remedies proposed in Senate Bill 7 to “an auto mechanic attempting to overhaul a broken down engine by adding a quart of oil and some washer fluid, or a physician attempting to administer a cure for an unspecified disease without first completing a full examination of the patient.” Dansack calls for scrapping Senate Bill 7 altogether and letting the new Governor and legislature work a fair and equitable reform of the system.

* 53rd District: Attorney Glenda Smith (D-Hamilton) has a campaign web site, which may not be new but is new to me. Smith, who represents predominantly indigent clients in criminal and juvenile law matters that often involve substance abuse and mental health problems, is challenging Rep. Shawn Webster (R-Hamilton) in this Butler County district.

* 66th District: Another site new to me is this one for William Newby (D), an Ohio National Guardsman and former Eagle Scout who is challenging Rep. Joe Uecker (R-Miami Township) in Clermont County.

* 79th District: Businessman and returning challenger Dave Fisher (D-Bethel Township has this site to support his campaign against Rep. Diana Fessler (R-New Carlisle) in Darke and Miami Counties. Fisher's startling logo has a shark superimposed over the text "Fisher 79th."


At 2:42 PM, Blogger Jill said...

Jeff, one more piece of fisking I want to do on the Goudy-Mandel age thing: the PD said "Mandel represents the type of young political leadership Ohio so desperately lacks" but then the editorial fails to point to what leadership Mandel has demonstrated. He has pursued good, valuable experiences. But to imply that he's demonstrated leadership, in the way Goudy has, or anyone else for that matter, is very misleading. Again, if they wanted to endorse Mandel, there are reasons enough - truly - he has a lot of suitable qualities for the job. Age, or lack of it, isn't one of them.


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