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Betras, Sammarone exchange words over Tressel comment

Published: Wed, April 9, 2014 @ 4:24 p.m.

YOUNGSTOWN — The war of words is escalating between Christopher Sammarone, a Democrat running for Mahoning County Probate Court judge, and the county Democratic Party Chairman David Betras.

And the war is over two words — “a leader” — who said it and when.

Sammarone’s campaign literature prominently uses the words attributed to Jim Tressel, who was the candidate’s football coach at Youngstown State University in the early 1990s. Sammarone addressed the issue at a press conference today.

The two words are part of a longer quote from Tressel in the Aug. 21, 1994, edition of The Vindicator in which the coach praises the leadership qualities of Sammarone.

Betras said it’s deceptive to use a 20-year-old-plus comment in a political ad about a candidate’s college football days.

“It’s clear to me it’s meant to imply Tressel is endorsing him,” Betras said. “Put it in context.”

The county party is backing Susan Maruca, Betras’ former law partner, for probate court.

But Sammarone said he’s “disappointed in Betras and Mrs. Maruca that they would attempt to discredit my campaign by attacking a time in my life that is precious to me” and Tressel, who he called a “mentor, friend and coach.”

For the complete story, read Thursday’s Vindicator and Vindy.com


1Silence_Dogood(1670 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

So Chris tell us how throwing a ball makes you qualified to sit in Judgement of others. And then tell us how a Coach that looked the other way when rules were being violated is someone we should look to for advice on who is best qualified for enforcing the law.

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2UNCOMMONSENSE(622 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Leadership qualities are an important part of any position. Personally I am tired of the other candidate's "empathy" and fake persona.

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3INTEL(62 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

basic rules for voting in Mahoning County...

and I quote..." IF their name ends in a vowel go to the next candidate"

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4Nurse_Midlo(34 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

The anointed one - Chris Sammarone - will go to any length to get elected.

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5Common(1 comment)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

What have Italians done that irks you, INTEL?

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6INTEL(62 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago


corruption.... plain and simple.. read your history on Mahoning County... see how many with a vowel have been charged and gone to prison...

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7forum0205(7 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Mr. Betrus should recuse himself in this race because of his personal/working relationship with Maruca. Let what their peers judge their qualifications as and public interaction be their judge. Remember: Mudslinging can go both ways!

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8papa1(711 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

betras is exactly right. for sammaroneto use something said by a football coach twenty years ago has nothing to do with the present.

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9Max(98 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

I probably wouldn't have had a problem with Maruca until Betras backed her. If Betras is behind a candidate, no way I'd vote for them. Betras is a joker.

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10harleydog(243 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Max you got that wrong. Betras is a total idiot.

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11walter_sobchak(2673 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

There would be nothing wrong with his ads IF Sammarone would say he was a player on Tressel-coached teams that won national championships and link that to his pride as a YSU alum and a Mahoning Valley "success" story. He should indeed be very proud of his past accomplishments. But, to namedrop "Jim Tressel" and "Pres. Clinton" in ads without the proper context is disingenuous!

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12billdog1(5784 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Who gives a crap. Just a bunch of political wranglings that aren't worth the ink used to print the article. Dave would cry if anybody endorsed somebody he didn't and Sammy would cry if anybody said something he didn't like. So what.

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13Silence_Dogood(1670 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Bgreen you can bill it as the match of all times.
The Bride of Frankinstine vs. Steroid boy.
The only question is who will get all the illegal gambling proceeds, after all this is the Mahoning valley. Who will get the juice, who will get the cut to look the other way, and who gets the hush funds.

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14kurtw(1759 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

"Intel--your problem is a Democratic one, not an Italian one. There were plenty of Irish, Slovaks, and Greeks who have gone down here over the years. Kerrigan, Cronin, Polovischak, Fergus, Belinky, Xenakis and Tsgaris to name a few. Sure there were Italians but come on, to say they were the whole problem is kind of a stretch."

Thanks Kernal! You said exactly what I was getting ready to say when I read Intels stupid, bigoted remark. The problem in the Mahoning Valley isn't particular individuals- of whatever race or ethnicity- it's the system itself that corrupts the individual. Whenever all- or most of the power- is concentrated in a single organization, corruption is the inevitable result. If Republicans had a monopoly around here, I think the outcome would be the same- you'd have the same kind of corruption. Competition between two parties is the best approach- the two sides keep each other honest.

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152muchtax(895 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Do not know Chris Smaarone, but after his dad admitted to illegally handing Demaine Kitchen the pervert, 4000$ under the table for his mayoral race. I decided the apple probably does not fall far from the tree so I will now have to vote for his opponent! Betras is a D.B. so I do not care who this ambulance chaser endorses!

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162muchtax(895 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Samarone uses 20 yr old crap a football coach said and Maruca not only has Betras in her court but almost no probate experience, 2 negatives! There will be a independent in the real race up against one of these two. I will be voting independent, someone who can stand on thier own two feet aNd does not need a ambulance chaser pushing for them!

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17Notorious_Pig(117 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Betras is the biggest finger-pointer in all the land, so when he calls someone else to the carpet, it shouldn't even be a talking point. Yes, the normal person looking at this literature would get certain impressions, however to whine, kick and scream about it only proves that Betras fears this could take votes from Elvira herself.....Ms. Maruca! Look, neither candidate is an honorable person to lead the probate court, so let these two scumbags contact Dana White at the UFC and let them throw down. The loser has to promise NEVER to run for public office again and the winner has to promise never to run for public office again. Problem solved...along with some much-anticipated entertainment!

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18realmen(35 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

My sources, who are completely accurate, tell me Susan Maruca has not practiced law in 2 years. Her "Husband" (everyone knows she has been divorced for years and has lived with her husband) runs the practice while she is pursuing an English degree at YSU. Maybe that is why her colleagues find her incompetent.

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19realmen(35 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

And you sources are ??????
My info is ACCURATE ! Investigate before you respond

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20realmen(35 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

And as she professes, "Family", why has she been divorced since April 2007 but has always lived with her ex. What kind of family is that ??? You better check her YSU status before you respond !!!!

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21realmen(35 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Call me what you want, you are just shooting off your mouth. I on the other hand have first hand FACTS !!! Do you think your "Beautiful" incompetent attorney is going to tell you the truth? Have you asked her about her divorce or are you afraid she will lie to you again? You know what they say about attorneys ! Believe what you want but I know the TRUTH !!!

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22realmen(35 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

You are afraid of the truth !

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23realmen(35 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

You have NO IDEA !! That is what is the problem with this valley, 99% are either morons or mobsters (just like Susan Maruca's father). Nothing has changed and nothing will change because this valley Wants the MOB !!!

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24Notorious_Pig(117 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Without giving up my "anonymity", based on Ohio records, Susan Maruca was the lead attorney in ONE case in 2012, ZERO cases in 2013, and ZERO cases thus far in 2014. So, if Susan Maruca is your attorney, and she is telling you that "she" is your attorney, then in actuality, one of those other ambulance-chasers at her firm is handling your case. Just because her name is on the letterhead, doesn't mean she is the one going to battle for you....especially since she has been trying to become judge for the past several months. Also, she cannot become elected and have any pending cases, in which she is the lead attorney. That would be a conflict of interest and someone else would have to close out your case.

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25realmen(35 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

Thank you !!! Now please tell this board that Betras FIRED her !!! That is ABSOLUTELY TRUE but she won't admit that to her "clients"

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26realmen(35 comments)posted 2 years, 2 months ago

And she is attending YSU !!!

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