MIAMI COUNTY — Another special election has fallen in the laps of Ohio’s 8th Congressional District residents, coming barely two months before the presidential election in November.
Due to Democratic candidate Corey Foister dropping out of the race for U.S. Representative from Ohio’s 8th Congressional District, the district will now have to hold a special election Democratic primary on Sept. 13 to elect another Democrat to run against Warren Davidson. Davidson, a Troy businessman and Republican, was elected during the last special election held in June to fill John Boehner’s unexpired term.
If Foister had dropped out of the race within 90 days before the November election, the Democratic Party could have appointed a new candidate. Foister dropped out 117 days before the election, so the district must hold a formal primary.
The special election primary is expected to cost Miami County approximately $77,000, which the state will reimburse. There is only one candidate on the ballot for the special election primary, Steven Fought.
Ohio’s 8th Congressional District includes all of Butler, Clark, Darke, Miami, and Preble counties and the southernmost portion of Mercer County.
“Can somebody call that guy on the phone and tell him that he’s wasting $1 million?” Miami County Board of Elections member Jose Lopez said during their meeting Thursday afternoon, referencing Foister. “That’s just unbelievable to me that someone would be that irresponsible.”
Chairman Kelly Gillis said that the state will reimburse the money, but Lopez said that it is still taxpayer money.
Also during the board’s meeting, Gillis announced his resignation. Director Bev Kendall read from a letter that Gillis wrote and dated July 11.
“It has been a wonderful and rewarding experience, but it is time to hand off to the younger generation,” Kendall read. “I wish to thank all board members, directors, deputy directors, and employees of the board whom I have worked with over the past 13 years.”
Gillis, a Democrat, will be staying on through the November election and will leave at the end of the year. Gillis also thanked the Miami County Democratic Party for allowing him to serve in that role.
“You’ve done a great job,” Lopez said.
The board also went over business in regard to each of the elections. The board approved supplying 425 paper ballots for the Sept. 13 special primary election and 4,250 for the Nov. 8 presidential election. They will be printed in-house.
The board also approved a cost of approximately $2.12 per absentee ballot to be sent out for the Nov. 8 presidential election. For the last presidential election, the board sent out approximately 9,000 ballots. Kendall estimated that they might send out 12,000 absentee ballots this elections. The total cost is estimated at being between $19,080 and $25,440. Election Systems & Software will be printing and mailing the absentee ballots.
The board will not be sending out absentee ballots for the Sept. 13 special primary election. They will be starting early voting for that election next weekend and will be open on Labor Day.
The board also rejected placing one local liquor option for Sunday alcohol sales on the Nov. 8 ballot for 1More in Piqua. The board then approved a local liquor option for the ballot for Circle K in Troy.
Finally, the board approved their contract with the West Milton Rotary, which takes the voting machines out to each voting precinct. The contract of $7,975 is only for the Sept. 13 election.
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