Thursday, May 11, 2006

Bob Ney 'What If:' In Which I Insult Ohio

Yesterday I wondered what happens under Ohio law if a Congressman like Bob Ney quits his re-election run after the primary. Well, today we have a partial answer. Roll Call (subscription required) reports that if Bob Ney were to withdraw from his re-election race by August 19, there would be a new Republican primary to replace him. It's unclear what will happen if he were to quit the race after that date:

Confusion if Ney Gets off Ballot
May 11, 2006
By Lauren W. Whittington,
Roll Call Staff

Embattled Rep. Bob Ney (R-Ohio) is vowing he will not be indicted in connection with the Jack Abramoff influence peddling scandal — and that he will be a candidate for re-election in November.

But if he were to remove his name from the ballot this summer, it could force a special election to fill the vacancy.

Because the Ohio primaries already have taken place, state law requires another primary be called to select a new nominee if a ballot vacancy arises more than 80 days before the November election.

If Ney were to step off the ballot after Aug. 19, which is 80 days out from the Nov. 7 election, there is some discrepancy as to what would take place.

According to a spokesman for the Ohio secretary of state’s office, it would be up to local GOP leaders to fill the vacancy.

“Inside 80 days, I believe the Republican chairmen from the counties that make up the district would get together and choose a replacement,” the spokesman said.

But some Republican lawyers who have looked at the state election code say they believe it would be impossible for Ney to get off the ballot at any point inside the 80-day window.

...A special primary in the expansive 18th district would likely be a wide-open race, although there are a handful of early favorites.

Chief among them are state Sen. Joy Padgett (R) and state Sen. Jay Hottinger (R).

Padgett is fresh off campaigning as Attorney General Jim Petro’s (R) gubernatorial running mate. Petro was defeated in last week’s GOP primary.

Hottinger is a veteran politician who serves as Assistant Majority Whip in the state Senate but is term-limited and cannot run again in 2006.

Democrats nominated Dover Law Director Zack Space last week...

Ney's district occupies the open space between Columbus and Canton, and it stretches south toward the Ohio river. If I remember the area from my drive back from Columbus that time, there's nothing there.

Actually, it appears that the Almanac of American Politics largely agrees with me:

The hills of eastern Ohio are one of those obscure parts of America, seen by most Americans, if they are at all, from speeding cars on the Interstates or U.S. highways on their way to some place else. They were settled early on in our history, in the 1790s, mostly by Virginians (there was no West Virginia until 1863), and for the most part sparsely: this was hard land to clear and hard land to farm, better suited for dairy cattle than the plains that lay beyond. In some places near the Ohio River there was industrial development early on. The local clay was used to make pottery, the coal that lies near the surface was dug up, a green vitriol works was built, and a nail factory went into operation, all before 1814, and in time the area became dotted with small factory towns. Farther south there was little industrial development and the landscape has a timeless feel today. This is a part of America little affected by the flow of immigrants from Europe in 1880-1924, southern blacks in 1940-65 or Latino and Asian immigrants since 1970. The most distinctive people here are the Amish, driving their horses and buggies over covered bridges in Holmes, Tuscarawas and Wayne Counties, the largest concentration of Amish in the world.

The 18th Congressional District covers much of this hill country, from Holmes and Tuscarawas Counties in the north to Ross and Jackson Counties in the south. It includes such cities as New Rumley, the birthplace of General George Custer; Zanesville, the birthplace of writer Zane Grey and architect Cass Gilbert and home of a famous Y-shaped bridge; and Chillicothe, the first capital of Ohio, on the Scioto River, beneath Mount Logan, which is stamped on the Great Seal of the state of Ohio. Politically, much of this area was ancestrally Democratic, but in the last two decades it has become more Republican. George W. Bush won 55% of the vote here in 2000.

Well, I know some people from Ohio visit this site. Feel free to defend your territory in the comments section.

Back to the top.

No comments: