On Friday, July 30, 2010, Massillon Mayor Francis H. Cicchinelli, Jr. announced he is, indeed, running for a seventh term to continue as mayor of Tigerland.
Here is his announcement confirming that he will run for a seventh term along with his reasons for running.
Most Stark County and Massillon political junkies expected the "I will run again" statement.
It was a bit of a surprise to see and hear the mayor taking off on the "carpetbaggers" feasting off Massillon government and his being snubbed by Strickland and his local event coordinator Catazaro-Perry when Strickland came to Massillon for a "Main Street" campaign event on July 23d.
Here is a video of that part of the press conference.
Who exactly was Cicchinelli referring to in speaking of the "carpetbaggers?"
Cicchinelli did not say specifically, but the SCPR thinks his reference probably was to Johnnie A. Maier, Jr., (Massillon clerk of courts and former Stark County Democratic Party chairman who lives in Tuscarawas Township) and, perhaps, arch political enemy Massillon Councilwoman Kathy Catazaro-Perry, who is a relative newcomer to Massillon.
The other topic of interest to those interested in Stark County "inside politics," was his addressing being snubbed by Governor Ted Strickland and Catazaro-Perry on July 23rd.
Cicchinelli did not directly say so at his press conference he held this past Friday (the 30th) to announce his run-again decision, but the SCPR believes that the snub by the politically allied group of Strickland, Catazaro-Perry and Johnnie A. Maier, Jr. was a large factor in Cicchinelli deciding to run again.
Cicchinelli only decided "for sure" to run within the last week.
Though Strickland's coming to Massillon was billed as a "Main Street" meet with the people event, the meeting was not held at a site on Lincolnway (Massillon's "Main Street"). Rather, it was held at 900 Ridge Mill Path, the home of Catazaro-Perry, which is located in one of Massllon's more affluent neighborhoods.
Reports are that the "Main Street" event was attended by some 40 persons. Included on the Mill Ridge Path list were Catazaro-Perry (of course), Maier, his "shadow" at the clerk of courts, namely; Shane Jackson (who also serves as the political director for the Stark County Democratic Party), Judge Eddie Elum (of the Massillon Municipal Court - a long time political enemy of the mayor), Stark County Commissioner Pete Ferguson, Stark County Commissioner Steve Meeks and Canton Mayor William J. Healy, II's political pal and operative Demetrius St. John.
In commenting on the size of the Mill Ridge Path event, Cicchinelli sort of belittled it in saying that he understood that later in the day Strickland was in Youngstown and some 400 attended his Youngstown "Main Street" event which obviously was held at a much more public venue than the one selected for Massillon.
Mayor Cicchinelli said at the press conference that had he gotten more advanced notice, he too would have been at the Catazaro-Perry sponsored event.
But the SCPR thinks not.
Here is a copy of the Catazaro-Perry invite: (Note the "in the wee hours of the morning e-mail and that the e-mail was not addressed direct to Cicchinell, but that he only merited being copied)
They mostly likely want the governor to themselves.
Governor Strickland's staff also did not follow proper political protocol in making sure that Cicchinelli was timely-invited. The Mayor says that a voicemail was left on office telephones "after" work hours on Thursday. for a Friday noontime event.
What an insult!
Like the mayor of a significantly-sized Ohio city could just drop everything and go to a political event on "at the last minute-esque" type of notice.
Mayor Cicchinelli won't say outright that he was snubbed, but is clear to the SCPR that is exactly was done to Cicchinelli.
How could a proud man like Frank Cicchinelli attend the Strickland event after it was obvious to him that he was an afterthought. Of course, he had to be busy with other matters. The perfect out for a man who had been embarrassed by a sitting governor.
The SCPR believes that there was no way on "God's green earth" that Cicchinelli was going to attend the event in the face of his being an afterthought.
Maier has said repeatedly how utterly enamored he is with Ted Strickland.
Well, does he want his "patron saint of politics" to lose in November because of what appear to be calculated, but stupid slights like this one? All indications are that the Strickland/Kasich race is going to be a very close race. Could this be one of those rare statewide contests that will be decided by a handful of votes?
Will offended Cicchinelli supporters be the difference? They could number in the hundreds, if not more.
Cichinelli appears to be politically smarter than the Catazaro-Perry led group.
He dashed off this letter to Governor Strickland.
Obviously, Cicchinelli is looking for some apologies.
It would appear that the savvy thing to do is for someone on the Governor's staff to write a letter of apology and have Catazaro-Perry do the same.
Otherwise, it could cost him a second term as being governor of Ohio.
With friends like Catazaro-Perry, Maier, Jackson et al, who needs any enemies?