While Jennifer Drlik confirms that she was a contributor to the "Chip" Conde campaign corrects the SCPR to the effect that she is NOT employed by the United Way of Stark County as originally reported.
The Report apologizes for the error.
There is no better politically collected person in all of Stark County than Stark County Commissioner Janet Creighton. And, A.R. "Chip" Conde is richly blessed to have her in his corner in the race for mayor of Canton that is currently underway.
The first step in Conde's quest to do what appears to be impossible in a 9 to 1 Democratic registration plurality in Canton is easy. He will, in the opinion of the SCPR, easily defeat Leon Gerig in the Republican May 3rd primary for the right to move on to the general election in November.
Conde's entrance into the Republican primary seemed to be a surprise to Gerig. Yours truly interviewed him on the eve of the candidacy deadline and he appeared not to know that a "name" Republican (compared to Garig himself) was poised to enter the race. Without naming the person, Creighton had tipped off the SCPR that there was likely to be someone more formidable than Gerig entering the race.
The Report believes that Creighton, more than any other Republican, is effectively and quietly at work to put Republicans in control of Stark County government including its county seat (Canton). The Report has learned that she is encouraging a widely talked about possible Republican candidate for county prosecutor to take on Democrat John Ferrero. Her activity obviously included (though she does not admit to it to The Report) persuading Conde to take on whichever Democrat survives the primary.
One has to believe that there is a desire on her part that Healy be the target.
Conde had served at the very highest level in the Creighton administration. Commissioner Creighton is very bullish on "Chip" Conde's abilities and will do all she can to see to it that he is elected mayor of Canton.
Conde's second step will be much more difficult than the first (the general election trek) whether the Democratic candidate is Mayor Healy or Councilman at Large Bill Smuckler.
Many Stark County political observers believe that Conde does not have the notoriety needed to take on the well known Healy or Smuckler in the 9 to 1 Democrat enclave.
The SCPR is not among that group. Why?
Because of Janet Creighton being closely tied to the Conde campaign.
Otherwise, the group think seems to be valid political analysis.
The Report believes that Creighton is still stinging from the 2007 Healy defeat and that her overwhelming win (predicted from the get-go by the SCPR) over Stark County Democrat Steve Meeks (a favorite of Stark Dems Chair Randy Gonzalez) has not abated the intensity of her desire to right the mar on her political success visited on her by Healy by better than 1,200 votes.
In examining Conde's pre-primary campaign finance report, you can see Janet Creighton's influence all over the place. And, it will become even more evident if Conde becomes the Republican nominee for the general election. For her own part, Creighton certainly has put her money where her mouth is.
If Healy is the Democrat nominee, one factor that Conde can add to the multiple differences between him and Healy will be that a huge majority of his contributions come from Canton and Stark County whereas Healy's is from out-of-town.
Here is the Conde report: