Cuyahoga County, Ohio Executive Ed FitzGerald, the de-facto Democratic Nominee for Governor, will have an important decision to make soon. The decision is who will his lieutenant governor be. It makes a difference.
The chatter has now picked up speed recently as Chief Political Reporter for The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Henry Gomez, wrote an article for Cleveland.com about the options.
I’d also like to make it known that I twitted Mr. Gomez about the situation back on the 9th of August:
Whoever Executive FitzGerald picks makes a huge difference. FitzGerald is still relatively unknown outside the bubble of the Cleveland/Akron media market, so his running mate should probably reside from outside that area. FitzGerald has had his troubles wooing the powerful black leaders in Cuyahoga County and a huge base of the Democratic Party is black, so in order to get the base to the polls a black leader might be in his best interest. The women’s vote is also key. Many woman’s groups have came after Governor Kasich for his party’s recently budget that came after the right for a women to choose, so a female leader is something that FitzGerald should look to.
So who was on Henry Gomez’s short-list? Here’s the list:
Tracy Maxwell Heard: Currently the House Minority Leader, first black woman to be majority floor leader.
Eric Kearney: A black lawyer and founder of a chain of African-American newspapers in southwest Ohio and northern Kentucky, he has been Senate minority leader since 2012.
Alicia Reece: Former city councilwoman and vice mayor in Cincinnati, Reece now heads the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus.
Lou Gentile: A white former Strickland aide, Gentile has earned several mentions from Statehouse insiders.
None of the above: There are always wild cards in the decision process.
There are no stand out choices for FitzGerald, but he definitely has a lot to look at. This race will be huge for Ohio as we choice what direction we want our state to go in. The filing deadline for the May 2014 primary is Feb. 5, so FitzGerald will have to choose before then. It should be known that both former Governor Strickland and Governor Kasich announced in the weeks before the filing deadline.
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