Monday, November 30, 2009

2nd Congressional District Comings and Goings

Some of this may have been covered elsewhere, but felt need to write about it. So, here goes....

Reality TV footnote Seeks to Eke Out their 16th Minute of Fame

Some schlep castoff of a season of the Donald Trump reality series the Apprentice has decided to go into politics. Surya Yalamanchili is running as an independent, joining fellow attention seekers Jim Parker of Waverly, who previously ran as a Democrat in the land of indepedents. Chili, as he is known, has a website that is strong on sentiment but little on substance.

Book Drops Out over Union Nastiness, Leaves Angry Armenian Dems' Lone Kook Hope

State Representative Todd Book, of the 89th district, has bowed out of the 2nd Congressional District Democrat Primary. Book made the announcement last week, saying he wanted to spend more time serving his constituents in the 89th. He cited the state pension issue (one which the state and the individual pension organizations have fumbled heavily)as something that will require his attention. There is a looming Pension bill that will come out of the committee Book chairs. Book was elected in 2002 and is serving his fourth term.

Book's announcement comes just a week after the Tri-State Building and Construction Trades Council rescinded its endorsement of him on November 17th. The source of the unendorsement has not been fully disclosed, but there is a great deal of speculation that it had to do with a deal that went down in Scioto County. The scrum was about labor used to build the new school building in the Portsmouth Clay School District. Evidently, the general contractor subcontracted a job with Book's dad's company. This company used a few green card immigrat workers which made the local unions upset. Therefore, some have surmised, the union wanted to get back at Book, even though Book had no control over the hiring decisions, and did not even know his dad's company was working for he district.

There has been some speculation as to what the future holds for Mr. Book. Some have said that he may run for the seat in the Senate being vacated by Tom Niehaus (R) in a few years. Also, some may be saying he might run again for the dem nomination for the 2nd congressional. Just a few months ago, he was considered a shining star for the party. Now, because of union politics, he is sitting this one out.

That leaves resident kook and nutjob David Krikorian the only Democrat filed for the race. Krikorian tried previously to run as an independent, claiming conservative values and pro business views. This was in stark contrast to his ties to the Democrat party and his donations to the like and appearance with Barack Obama. Oh boy, looks like Redfern and company are going to have a real keeper on their hands. Would appear to be good news for Jean Schmidt, the Republican incumbent...However...

Does the C Stand for Conservative? WMD Would like to Know

...a Republican challenger has filed to run against Jean Schmidt for the Republican nomination for the seat she currently holds serving the 2nd Congressional Distrct. The person? C. Michael Kilburn, a Warren County commissioner, and former booster of one Jean Schmidt. Mr. Kilburn is a Warren County commissioner who made headlines for refusing to take stimulus money from the US Government, a bill that Jean Schmidt voted for (see CORRECTION below). Kilburn has been in office since 1982. From a local paper:
My first day in office our payroll check bounced. Today we've got a wonderful reserve fund, we're one of the few counties that don't have serious financial problems," Kilburn said. "Warren County is just one success story of less government, less spending, and prudent financial management and I think I can take those skills to Washington."

Kilburn was the only Warren County elected official to endorse incumbent Jean Schmidt when she ran for office in 2006, three years later he said he no longer believes she is the right person for the job.

"I don't want to say anything bad about Jean ... I don't sense that Jean Schmidt's favorability is very high at this point," Kilburn said. "I just don't think she's the real true conservative that we need up there at this particular time and I think I am."

Kilburn said he is a very strong conservative like his father and his grandfather and he has always been in favor of electing Christian conservatives to office.

"My full name is Charles Michael Kilburn, my ballot name is C. Michael Kilburn. People ask me what the C stands for and I tell them conservative," Kilburn said.

According to his website, he was one of the first local elected officials to speak out against accepting Federal stimulus dollars, money that Warren County never accepted. He said officials in Washington today, and especially Republicans, have lost their way.

"We've got a social program for every hangnail problem in society and we can't afford it," Kilburn said. "We never could afford it but no one wanted to believe it. Now we're in a situation where we've got two choices we can continue our reckless fiscal ways. We can continue to borrow money from China to finance our insatiable desire to grow government, or we can elect some true conservatives who are going to be for less government, less spending, less taxes and get this economy back on its feet."

Mr. Kilburn has some impressive accomplishments as commissioner:
In fact Kilburn said Warren County has refunded county property owners all of their local millage, a total of more than $100 million according to Kilburn, over the last 10 years.

During his time in office Warren County was the first county in the state to adopt a county-wide 911 emergency communication system and standardize emergency radios with 800 megahertz equipment. He said his county has focused on doing more with less.

"We built our system for $3 million ... and Montgomery County, the county to the north of us, put in an 800 system four or five years later and they spent $30 million on it," Kilburn said.

Warren County has built a new jail, a new county administrative building, and a new juvenile detention center ... each was built without borrowing any money. Kilburn said the county saved up and paid for each one in cash.

"Warren County is the second fastest growing in the state of Ohio and to have no debt, that's an accomplishment," Kilburn said.

Mr. Kilburn said he would be mentored by former state senator Cooper Snyder.

While that is all well and good, we at WMD still pose the questions we ask of others, what would you do differently than Jean Schmidt? What specific votes would you have differed, and what would you do differently?

Analysis at this Point

The departure of Book seems to make this more likely of being a Republican hold, but the question is: who is going to hold it? And, looking at some of the local news organizations and comments, many people who don't even know who David Krikorian is nor his shady and expletive filled invective past are saying better him than Kilburn or Schmidt.

Schmidt, who has fought against the odds since she won the big primary fight vs. Bob McKewen et. al., has been at times her own worst enemy. During the big Cincinnati Tea party rally, she said some rather questionable statements regarding the judicial system and the stimulus spending. However, she has fought hard and held the seat and the power of incumbency is on her side. However, with the populist uprising against ANY member of Congress and the approval rating being so low, will she be a casualty? Right now, she is the favorite. She has the experience and the connections and donors to mount a good campaign. Kilburn? We don't know. His resume is impressive, but we at WMD need to know more. As for Krikorian, the more you listen to the guy and hear about his screed all over the state, the more you realize that putting him in office would be like giving the keys to the car to a raving lunatic. As for Chili, go back to your day job.


  • While Rep. Schmidt did indeed vote for the TARP bill, she did NOT vote for the stimulus bill.