As each day passes, the potential for Ohio to have two primary elections next year moves closer.
State Republicans and Democrats each blame each other for the mess that, as of now, has forced a March 6 primary election for all partisan candidates, except for U.S. House of Representatives and president. That primary would be held June 12.
Essentially, candidates for county, state and local races along with U.S. Senate would be on the ballot in March with a candidacy petition filing deadline of Dec. 7 because candidates must file at least 90 days before an election.
Here’s a short version of how this happened:
House Bill 194 changed many state election laws, and one of them was to move the primary from March to May.
Democrats threatened a potential referendum of the measure and their efforts seem poised to make the November ballot, which means the bill does not go into effect until voters have their say.
Then came the fight to draw new congressional boundaries to shrink Ohio from 18 to 16 congressional districts because of slow population growth.
Democrats again threatened referendum as they were upset that Republicans drew boundaries that Democrats say favor the GOP 12 to 4.
So that meant that the new congressional district boundaries might not be in place in time for candidates to file by Dec. 7. How could a candidate file to run for a district that doesn’t exist?
The Ohio General Assembly then approved House Bill 318 that created two primaries to address the problem.
It doesn’t seem like many people are happy with that solution as the added cost to the state for two primaries is estimated at $15 million. In a state that continues to scrape for every dollar, will this really happen?
Former Lake County Elections Board Director Janet F. Clair (just typing former there seemed pretty weird) will be recognized by the Elections Board at a retirement party starting at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 14 at the Croatian Lodge Party Center in Eastlake. U.S. Rep. Steven. C. LaTourette will be master of ceremonies.
Clair has always championed democracy and the election process and strived to share her knowledge with anyone who asked, regardless of political party.
I thank Clair for her help to learn more about the local, state and even federal election process.
Often our banter was conversational, but sometimes I had to ask a tough question or find out answers about complicated subjects maybe only political junkies would care about.
She always made sure I understood the details, which I truly appreciated.
Jason Wuliger, a Kirtland Republican, filed with the Elections Board for Lake County recorder.
n Lake County Common Pleas Court Judge Richard L. Collins Jr. campaign kickoff from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, at LaMalfa in Mentor. See Terry Gerred-Ditchcreek.
n Lake County Common Pleas Court Judge Eugene A. Lucci fundraiser 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Dec. 1, at LaMalfa in Mentor. See Walt McNamara.
n Geauga County Republican Party Christmas Party begins at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 2 at Chagrin Valley Athletic Club, Bainbridge Township. See Frank or Bernadette Gliha.
n Wuliger’s campaign kickoff will be 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Dec. 6 at Cork’s Wine Bar in Willoughby. See Susan Culotta.
n Judy Moran, candidate for Lake County commissioner, campaign kickoff from 5:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Dec. 12 at Capelli’s in Mentor. See Kathy Russo.
John Arthur Hutchison