Sunday, October 31, 2010


UPDATE:  10/31/2010 - 3:18 PM

The Report received a call from candidate Zumbar minutes ago.

There are three points to cover in this update.

First, regarding the fact that the husband of Susan Verble, a regional liaison with the State of Ohio Auditor's office contributed to the Zumbar campaign.  Candidate Zumbar does not see any problem with such a contribution and obviously will not be moving to return it. 

Such, of course, is a determination for the candidate to make and live with the consequences; negative, positive or neutral.  What's more, The Report understands Zumbar to be taking the position that it was an overreach by yours truly to focus on the Verble contribution at all.  Obviously The Report disagrees.

What really counts is the public perception.  It is the position of the SCPR that such contributions should be highlighted by the likes of The Repository and the SCPR.  For the general public would not have any idea who the Verbles are.

Some voters are likely to agree with Zumbar and some with the SCPR.  As Zumbar has certain judgments to make, so does The Report.

Second, on the point that the campaign finance report of October 21st shows that most of Zumbar's support comes from the Alliance area.  Zumbar tells the SCPR that he had a fundraiser in North Canton on October 14th and that the list of event contributors would show that he has broad support across Stark County. The pre-general election campaign finance report cuts off as of October 13th.  Accordingly, the North Canton event contributions would not show up on the pre-general report.

When the SCPR has access to that information, it will be published in the pages of this blog.  If candidate Zumbar wants to get that information to yours truly within the next day, The Report will be glad to supplement this particular blog with information as to whom attended the North Canton event and the contributions they made.

The Report also corrects two inadvertent factual errors that occurred in this blog.  First, contributor Charles Brown, III is the son of Judge Charles E. Brown, Jr, not Judge Brown himself, and  contributor Jane Vignos served as Stark County Recorder and not as Stark County Auditor.


Alex Zumbar's political base is in Alliance.  Accordingly, his pre-general election campaign finance report looks like Alliance versus the rest of Stark County in the light of  Democratic opponent Ken Koher's report.  Or maybe even an Alliance versus Massillon given the heavy tinge of Massillon contributors to Koher.

It is striking that none of North Canton's officials appear to have contributed to Zumbar's campaign.

The main reason Ken Koher surfaced to be a "surprise" nominee of the Stark County Democratic Party to fill out the remainder of county commissioner deposed Treasurer Gary D. Zeigler's term is that former Stark County Democratic Party chairman Johnnie A. Maier, Jr. got behind him.

Once the word got out that Koher was Maier's man, the rest of the candidates could pack it in.  It is The Report's experience that Maier himself (individually or through his campaign committee) rarely contributes to any other candidate.  Of course, while he was chairman, it was very unwise for existing or aspiring Democrat officeholders not to contribute to Maier's campaigns.  Maier is clearly - a one-way street kind of politician.

So to see his campaign committee making a Koher contribution is a keepsake for political junkies.  Undoubtedly, they will be printing this blog out to get the Maier contribution graphic so as to frame it and hang it on the office wall.

And as readers can see, there are quite a few Massillonians that Maier brought along with him into the Koher fold. 

Clearly, Zumbar has the political experience advantage over Koher.  He is associated closely with former Stark County Republican chairman Charles E. Brown, III (now a Common Pleas Court judge) having worked with him and having worked the political hustings with Brown during Brown's days as party chairman.

Zumbar's brother (Andrew) is Alliance's law director.  It seems as if all of Alliance's major political figures have contributed to Zumbar's campaign.

There is one contribution that The Report believes was unwise for Zumbar to accept.  It has to do with the Terrence Verble contribution.  The Report believes that the contributor is the spouse of Susan Verble who is an employee of the State of Ohio Auditor's (SAO) office (North Canton).

Given the controversy surrounding the quality or lack of quality of work of the SAO in its audit of the Stark Treasury on the Frustaci matter, it would appear not to be a smart and trust-engendering thing for Zumbar to have any political relationship whatsoever with (direct or indirect) an employee of the SAO.

The Report tried to contact Zumbar for comment but was unsuccessful.

What follows is an extract of the filings of pre-general campaign finance reports by Koher and Zumbar which were due on October 21, 2010.



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