Primary concernsWritten by Tom Pounds/ Michael S. Miller | | firstname.lastname@example.org
You can’t fool all the Lucas County voters all the time, but apparently Phil Copeland fooled at least 17,801 voters in the county recorder race. Copeland captured 57 percent of the March 6 Democratic primary vote to top James Seaman and Kevin Eff. Copeland will face Republican George Sarantou on Nov. 6.
Copeland did not attend the Feb. 27 recorder candidate forum to tell the public what he would bring to the office. Prior to his election victory, he told Toledo Free Press, “I want to go and be a part of it and I may have some ideas when I get in there.”
The recorder position is important beyond its modest level of public recognition; Copeland’s vague goals should be a red flag to informed voters.
Since we now have eight months to schedule it, Toledo Free Press is offering to sponsor and host any forum or debate between Copeland and Sarantou. Surely both candidates will agree to meet in public and discuss their specific plans for the office.
Copeland’s victory was just one discordant note in a primary that also saw local GOP aspirant Jon Stainbrook hijack Ronald Reagan’s legacy — and Jonathan Binkley’s surname — in his successful run for state central committee. We are confident that had Reagan spent five minutes in a room with Stainbrook, he would have left Stainbrook needing surgical help to remove a jar of jelly beans.
In other election news, Rep. Marcy Kaptur defeated Cuyahoga County-based Rep. Dennis Kucinich in arguably the most important contest of the night to people in Northwest Ohio. There were legitimate concerns over how much attention Kucinich would have given our region; though her territory is now much greater, Kaptur will never let her eye leave the Toledo area.
Conventional wisdom has the heavily Democratic District 9 backing Kaptur over Republican Samuel “Joe the Plumber” Wurzelbacher, but the stage is set for some interesting debates as the two battle for the seat.
Josh Mandel dominated the Republican primary for Ohio Senate, garnering more votes than all five of his opponents combined. He will not beat incumbent Democrat Sherrod Brown by that margin, but this is a race to watch as the GOP’s rising star takes on Brown, the career politician who defeated incumbent Mike DeWine in 2006.
Perrysburg opted out of TARTA service, a short-sighted decision that will have major ramifications for the people who depend on the bus service for transportation. Time will tell if the money the individuals save is worth the sacrifice to the community as a whole.
Toledo voters approved the “temporary” 3/4 percent payroll tax, taking one worry away from city leaders, allowing them to focus on issues like the promised (and much needed) street repairs and clearing the November ballot for a potential Toledo Public Schools levy attempt.
Disappointingly, but not surprisingly, the election in Lucas County was marred by reports of votes denied and voters given wrong ballots. The Kaptur campaign described the situation in the BOE as “sloppy” and “pathetic,” and will get no argument from us. Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted’s policy of “give ’em enough rope to hang themselves” has saddled the Lucas County BOE with inexperienced leadership that needs to quickly demonstrate exponential quality-control improvement before the presidential election.
The primaries are history; the next few months will offer ample opportunity for Lucas County voters to educate themselves on the issues and candidates. If the Democratic recorder results are any indication, there is a great deal of educating to be done.
Thomas F. Pounds is president and publisher of Toledo Free Press and Toledo Free Press Star. Email him at email@example.com.
Michael S. Miller is editor in chief of Toledo Free Press and Toledo Free Press Star. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tags: Dennis Kucinich, District 9, George Sarantou, James Seaman, Joe the Plumber, Jon Husted, Jon Stainbrook, Jonathan Binkley, Josh Mandel, Kevin Eff, Lighting The Fuse, Lucas County Board of Elections, Marcy Kaptur, Michael S. Miller, Phil Copeland, Publisher's Statement, Ronald Reagan, Samuel Wurzelbacher, Sherrod Brown, TARTA, Tom Pounds