Incumbents fare well in Valley congressional races


By Denise Dick

denise_dick@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

It was a good night for incumbents in Mahoning Valley congressional races as well as U.S. Senate.

Shortly after Ohio polls closed at 7:30 p.m., Ted Strickland announced that he already had called to congratulate Sen. Ron Portman on his re-election.

Portman earned 59 percent compared with Strickland’s 36 percent.

U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan of Howland, D-13th, handily held off a challenge from Richard A. Morckel, 73 percent to 26 percent. U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson kept his 6th District seat, besting Michael L. Lorentz, a Democrat.

Johnson collected 71 percent compared with Lorentz’s 29 percent.

Ryan said he plans to continue to focus in his next term on what he’s already working on. “I think just continuing build out what we’ve been doing, continuing to build it out with America Makes in downtown Youngstown.” That’s where future jobs are, he said. He pointed to the $10 million project to help sustain Air Force aircraft.

The University of Dayton Research Institute and YSU last July were awarded a $10.87 million direct project opportunity by America Makes, the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute. Of that, $4 million goes to YSU.

Ryan also referred to the new business, Joseph Co. International. That company broke ground for a $20 million chill-can technology, can-filling and distribution center on the city’s East Side that will use the world’s first self-chilling beverage can, saying the technology has potential defense applications.

Portman said: “Thank you, Ohio. We did it! And a special thanks to each and every one of you here. Together, we’ve waged a great campaign. We came from behind and finished strong. And I couldn’t have asked for better allies and friends to see it through to victory tonight.”

Strickland, who served as Ohio governor from 2006-10, acknowledges that election results weren’t what he hoped for.

“I have dedicated my life to working for working people because that’s where I come from, that’s who I care about, and that who I will always stand up for,” he said.

Even in traditionally Democrat-leaning Mahoning County, Portman came out ahead with 50 percent for Portand to Stickland’s 45 percent. A Green Party and two independents also were in the race. In Columbiana County, Portman collected 68 percent to Strickland’s 26 percent in unofficial totals. In Trumbull County, Portman got 54 percent to Strickland’s 41 percent.

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