Saturday, January 23, 2010


Mayor David Held has confirmed to the SCPR that he is a possible replacement for Green-resident Mayor Taylor as Ohio auditor.  Taylor decided not to run again "apparently" because John Kasich asked her to be his running mate in his effort to unseat Democrat and Governor Ted Strickland in November.



Another factor is that Taylor was going to face a re-election race with a "well-moneyed" Democrat (isn't that interesting) come the fall election.

Could that be at least a partial reason that Taylor decided to make the switch?

Held is under consideration by the Ohio Republican Party to be its candidate for the office Taylor is vacating.

Held says the decision of whether or not he is to be the Republican nominee should be made within the next week or so.  He is to meet with Ohio GOP chairman Kevin DeWine and other important Columbus-based Republican politicians soon.

In the opinion of the SCPR, Held is a well-intentioned but largely ineffective mayor of North Canton.   Many of North Canton's council members view him as being a weak mayor who runs off too much at the mouth.

The latest flak flying between Council and Held revolves around several matters:  one being Held's request that North Canton's law director investigate the conduct of Councilman Jeff Davies vis-a-vis certain North Canton officials and employees; Held's statements about the city's dumping of "street sweepings" in apparent violation of Ohio law,  and his defense of certain city administration officials who are out-of-favor with North Canton Council.

If one digs even deeper, a whole array of differences surface as having occurred between Held and Council members and other North Canton administration officials (previous administrations) when Held was the city administrator.

So that led to the SCPR telling Held in yesterday's conversation that, perhaps, being a state official would be a better fit for him.

And he would, if elected, be much more powerful in promulgating and enforcing state auditing standards.  Moreover, he would sit on the state reapportionment board, and, if the Republican control a majority of the board, be in a position to affect how Ohio U.S. congressional seats are drawn (after the 2010 census) as well as Ohio's state House of Represenative and Senate seats would be configured.

Even if Republicans do tap him to run as the GOP candidate for secretary of state, he has a huge obstale to overcome.

On the surface Pepper is no one special.  He is president of the Hamilton County Board of Commissioners and served previously on the Cincinnati City Council.

However, he does have an important pedigree.  He is the son of John E. Pepper, Jr., chairman of the board of Disney and former Procter and Gamble official out of Cincinnati.

What do the Pepper bios mean to David Held if he is selected to be the Republican nominee for Ohio auditor

First, an idenity standpoint, Held will be at some disadvantage because Pepper has been on Cincinnati City Council and is president, now, of the Hamilton County Board of Commissioners which contains a larger population base than Held's geographical base.

But there is not that much of a difference that Held could not overcome with some expert guidance out of the Ohio Republican Party.

The second diaadvantage is huge, however.  Pepper has let it be known that he will spend about $5 million in the race to become Ohio's next auditor.

With an effective campaign, Held could actually turn running against "big money" into an advantage.

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