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Wilson calls loss ‘shocking, surreal’

Published: Sat, December 4, 2010 @ 12:01 a.m.

By David Skolnick



U.S. Rep. Charlie Wilson said he has a difficult time accepting his loss to Republican Bill Johnson.

Losing was “much harder than I thought,” Wilson, D-6th, said Friday in his first press interview since that defeat more than a month ago. “It was very surreal. I never had anything like that happen. It was just shocking.”

Wilson, of St. Clairsville, had won every other political race he’d been in: four for the Ohio House, one for the state Senate and two for the U.S. House.

Wilson expected a close race with Johnson of Poland and to win by 5 percentage points to 7 percentage points. Instead, Johnson beat Wilson by 5 percentage points in the Nov. 2 election.

“When we saw results from around the country with my colleagues losing, we knew there was a wave coming,” he said.

That “wave” includes 85 new freshmen Republicans in the U.S. House, including Johnson.

Wilson said one reason he lost his bid for a third two-year term in Congress was that “the electorate was angry even though we did a lot of good things.”

But “it was not quite enough to do away with the idea that people were hurting,” he added.

When asked about the failures of Democrats in this election, Wilson said, “We should have never ever let health-care [reform] drag on for a year. It should have been voted on immediately. Then we could get back to focusing on job creation.”

Wilson spoke to Johnson on the night of the election to congratulate him but hasn’t talked to him since.

When his term is up at the end of the month, Wilson said he plans to return to St. Clairsville and work at his family businesses: a funeral home and a furniture store.

A statewide redistricting of congressional and state legislative boundaries will be done by Republicans for the 2012 election. Depending on where lines are drawn, Wilson said, “There may be opportunities” for him to run for a political position. Wilson didn’t rule out a return to Congress or the state Legislature.

Wilson said he may find life away from politics to be to his liking and decide not to run for another position.

Also, Wilson apologized to The Vindicator for taking more than a month to return numerous telephone calls from the newspaper to discuss the defeat and his future plans.

“I have no excuse for it except all of our people were emotionally fired up,” he said. “I apologize. I didn’t handle it well. I feel so bad. For me to not respond was wrong.”

Wilson closed four of his five district offices Friday, including those in Canfield and Wellsville. The remaining office in Bridgeport closes Dec. 17.


11970mach1(1005 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

I am not a big fan of Wilson's voting record, and glad Johnson won even though I don't vote in that district.

But Wilson deserves credit for apologizing for his actions.

However, closing his offices 2 weeks early doesn't show very much interest in his constituents. maybe that is why he lost.

Now if Vindy would just apologize for not covering story about Wilson's domestic abuse issues........

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2Nonsocialist(710 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Other quotes from Democratic-Socialist Wilson omitted by the editor:

"You guys at the Vindy are tops. Thanks for covering me for me. Your subscribers are too stupid for the truth anyway....are you guys hiring?"

"I'm devastated. You mean I gotta work and live among the unwashed peasants?! Ugggh!"

"Go figure...I thoughts folks liked their country getting raped. What's next, they don't like the bribes used to pass MarxCare?!?!"

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3NoBS(2651 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Charlie Wilson still doesn't get it. He's still clueless as to why he lost. 'Maybe if they'd voted earlier on the healthcare bill' he says, he'd have won. Um, no. It's BECAUSE of the healthcare bill that he lost. He voted for it, despite the clear message from his constituency that we were not in favor of it. Elected officials who were so arrogant as to believe they know better than we mere mortals what's best for us were summarily removed. Those lucky enough to not have their terms up in 2010 will have a hard time regaining favor with the voters, too, because those of us lucky enough to still have jobs with some sort of health care benefits are all looking at large increases in the costs of our health care, so that the Socialist program known as Obamacare can redistribute our wealth. More expenses on necessities means less money available for luxuries like new furniture or a big fancy funeral with all the trimmings.

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4Traveler(606 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Maybe if you would have fought against free trade when you first got elected instead of making a big deal of being against it right before the election or how if we reelect you you have all these great ideas to help the middle class you will do this time but where to busy last time.

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5faith(200 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Wild Bill wants to close the homeless shelters, said them homeless are just lazy and looking for a free meal. GO WILD BILL JOHNSON!

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6Tony1(53 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Charlie Wilson caused his own defeat,he did what he wanted and not what we the people wanted.Let this be a wake up call,for all politicians.We voted you in and we will vote you out,that includes Johnson.

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7palbubba(791 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

NoBS and Tony1 have it exactly right. The reason Charlie lost was that he was listening to Nancy Pelosi and not to we the people. We can only hope that he will decide he likes private life and will never run again.

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8redeye1(5514 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Hey Charliwe how does it feel to have your wealth taken away from you? May be you will finally learn what the rest of us are going thru. Never mind that I said that, you will never learn! But then again maybe good old Nancy will come to rescue. NO! Tgat Right! She doesn't associate with losers.

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9southsidedave(5183 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Shocking & surreal, difficult time accepting the loss. Well, get over it Charlie!!

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10alpheusiam(64 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

C'mon Charlie, shocking and surreal? Don't you recall the email I sent you guaranteeing you that you would lose if you ever voted with Pelosi again. This was when you sent out those stupid surveys about Obamacare and all your other communist bills, you had plenty of time to vote with the wishes of your district. You are an anti American traitor and deserve what you got. But shocked? Surreal? Now you're just a liar exposed and living in the hell you deserve. When your ads accused Johnson of making a quarter of a million dollars didn't you remember you get taxpayer payroll of $170 thousand+ and have an office budget in the millions and don't pay for a haircut or a burger or bottle of water and have 5 offices? Sounds like Johnson was a pauper compared to you. You thought your district was stupid, told you you would lose! Guess we get the last laugh. How surreal is that?

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11seminole(476 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

The shock for this goof is that he realizes he spent twice as much as Johnson and still lost. Folks are struggling and this ass is thinking backwards as to how he could have saved his job and wreaked more havoc in the valley. Good thing it was up to folks with some brains to weed out morons like this clown and the rest of his croonies.Maybe Betras give you some of his Kleenex and you both can cry together...

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