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Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Ohio Primary Results Wrap-Up

Posted by DavidNYC

Ohio seemed to have the most interesting batch of primaries yesterday. Some results in key races:

• OH-02 (Incumbent, Schmidt): Wow did Jean Schmidt ever eke out a narrow win - just 48-42 over Bob McEwen. I wonder if he's cursing the two also-ran candidates, considering that Schmidt didn't even crack 50%. In a way, this may be the best possible outcome for us. Though OH-02 is hardly a competitive seat, we still face the most pathetic possible candidate (Schmidt) who's been embarrassingly weakened in her primary. Our candidate will be Victoria Wulsin.

• OH-04 (Open, Oxley): Not a race really on anyone's radar, as it's R+13.6. But this is an open seat. Republican Jim Jordan won a multi-way primary with 51% of the vote. Our man is Richard Siferd, who was unopposed. And speaking of this seat, the Dem who challenged Oxley last time, up-and-comer Ben Konop, decided to run for Lucas County Commissioner (apparently a pretty powerful post). I had hoped that Ben would run for OH-04 again, but I'm glad to see he won his primary last night (and quite convicingly, too).

• OH-06 (Open, Strickland): Charlie Wilson pulled it off. Thank the maker! He did a pretty nice job, too, winning with 66% of the vote. Chris Bowers makes the argument that the write-in debacle actually strengthened Wilson's campaign by forcing him to work hard early. I buy it. I'm also pleased to see that the GOP establishment pick, Chuck Blasdel, failed to crack 50% in winning his primary.

• OH-12 (Incumbent, Tiberi): Again, not a race many people are watching. But Bob Shamansky, a one-term former Congressman from way back in the day, won the right to be the Dem nominee. However, in theory, this district ought to be competitive, because it's a mere R+0.7.

• OH-13 (Open, Brown): Betty Sutton wins, and all I can say is, I'm really glad Capri Cafaro lost. Maybe she can start sharing her fortune with candidates who can, you know, win. Meanwhile, GOP golden boy Craig Foltin won with 37%.

• OH-16 (Incumbent, Regula): Wow, I didn't even know Ralph "Malph" Regula was on the receiving end of a serious primary challenge - he eked out a 58-42 win. That's pretty shabby for a zillion-year incumbent, and it lends further credence to the notion that we can definitely pick up this seat - if not now, then when Regula retires at the end of the next term. (Recall this poll.) Pastor Tom Shaw won the Dem nod in a very narrow race (51-49), though I can't say I'm enthused about the fact that his website is still "under construction."

• OH-18 (Incumbent, Ney): Big upset. Netroots-backed Zack Space beats Fighting Dem Joe Sulzer quite handily, 39-24. What's more, Sulzer actually finished in third place, behind a candidate I'd never even heard of, Jennifer Stewart. On the GOP side, Bob Ney won 68-32. Most observers expect him to pull a DeLay and drop out post-primary so that the GOP elders can annoint his replacement.

• OH-Gov (Open, Taft): Ken Blackwell beat Jim Petro, 56-44 for the Republican nod. I seriously hope Ted Strickland whoops his ass.

• OH-Sen (Incumbent, DeWine): Not much to report here, except for the fact that Mike DeWine won his primary with a smaller percentage than Sherrod Brown did, 72 vs. 78. DeWine edged Brown in total votes, though, 544K to 538K.

Any additional thoughts on Ohio?

Posted at 10:39 AM in 2006 Elections, Ohio | Technorati

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Tracked on May 4, 2006 08:36 AM


20% from Cuyahoga, Brown might still get more total votes.

Posted by: Democraticavenger [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 3, 2006 12:10 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Whither the Fighting Dems?

Sulzer goes down in the primary, Dunn and Hackett don't even make it to Primary Day... have any of our Fighting Dems won a primary this cycle? Seems like they got a lot of press for not much of an impact.

Posted by: Matthew Gertz [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 3, 2006 02:13 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

There are over 70 Fighting Dems. Many have or had primaries. No one expected all of them to be our nominees come November. (And Duckworth & Laesch both won in IL. Ted Ankrum won in TX. I may be missing some others.)

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 3, 2006 02:30 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

What's the story with Zack Space? I was quite stunned when it became evident Sulzer wasn't gonna win. Can this guy beat Ney?

I'm also unfamiliar with either Betty Sutton or GOP "golden boy" Craig Foltin in OH-13. I definitely danced a jig in my mind when Cafaro got beat. Kinda scary she managed to outpoll Tom Sawyer though. Who knew there were that many horny frat boys in Akron, Ohio.

Ultimately, I think the GOP efforts to tank Charlie Wilson with the "don't vote for scary liberal Bob Carr" campaign helped Wilson as it forced him and area Dems to step up to the mic rather than simply count on the fact that everybody in the district knew Wilson was the man. I'm definitely more optimistic about this race after the primary results...and the turnout gap between the parties.

Does Victoria Wulsin have a prayer of toppling the unimaginably awful Jean Schmidt in OH-02? Primary turnout numbers weren't optimistic.

Posted by: Mark [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 3, 2006 02:52 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

As David says, there are over 70 fighting dems. We need 15 wins to take back Congress, including both fighting dem vets and other fighting dems.

Another factor is that many fighting dems are unopposed so don't figure in the primaries at all. As soon as the primaries are over, they are the official nominees. In Texas two FDs went down and Ted Ankrum won, but another half dozen were unopposed so a full slate of FDs will be on the November ballot.

My latest estimate is that probably about 20-25 have a fighting chance and certain a dozen, like Eric Massa in NY-29, have a better than even chance. But even in loosing, many of the FDs are not simply sacrificial lambs, but are building the Dem Party back up in areas where they caved in for decades. It takes more than one election cycle to take back many of these districts.

The good news is that FDs run on their merits and the Dems who beat them are likely to be good candidates and -- the people have spoken. Joe Sulzer was a good candidate and his lose was a disappointment. He goes on our Honor Roll of FD candidates who are no longer in the race.

In Indiana, Hayhurst, a very excellent FD candidate, won while Cornstuble lost. The voters spoke. It was 50/50. Better than the Ohio count and good enough. In NC the one FD was unopposed. Another great FD, Tim Dunn, dropped out earlier for financial reasons relating to his business and family. It was a great loss. He is on our Honor Roll.

So there will be casulties. It is not an easy battle, but if 12-25 of the total of 80+ who have run from the beginning (including those who have withdrawn, like Bryan Lentz in PA, win out it will be a great win for the Democrats.

There is a great deal of difference in the quality of FDs, like any field of candidates, and some are top notch (Eric Massa, Andrew Horne, Mike Weaver, Chris Carney, and many more) and who either were career military men or those who served well and then build impressive civilian careers. Others are not so well qualified. So be it.


Go sign the Petition inaugurated by Eric Massa and Jeff Latas for Rumsfield's resignation. This will be opened up in a press conference and press release probably on Monday with the identify of the person who will hand deliver the Petition revealed. 50 FDs have so far signed off on the Petition. Go have a look and sign up (ignore any messages you see that pop up. Only sign once - your name WILL be added).

Noel Schutz

Posted by: Noel Schutz [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2006 10:49 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment