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Is Pat Lowry eyeing Ohio Senate seat?

By Bertram de Souza (Contact)

Published November 22, 2008

After years of being Democratic Congressman Tim Ryan's chief spokesman and close adviser, Pat Lowry of Youngstown may be ready to test the political waters himself. There's talk that Lowry, a former John F. Kennedy High School teacher who got to know student Ryan, is thinking of seeking the appointment to the 33rd District Senate seat being vacated by Democrat John Boccieri. Boccieri, formerly of New Middletown, is on his way to Congress.

Should Lowry throw his hat in the ring, he will undoubtedly have the full support of the very popular Congressman Ryan of Niles, D-17th, and could expect a nod from Boccieri. After all, Ryan, who has established himself as a rising star in the House of Representatives, campaigned hard for Boccieri in the 14th Congressional District.

Lowry, who ran twice unsuccessfully for Youngtown City Council president, has about a week to submit his résumé to the Mahoning County Democratic Party. There are other potential candidates, including former Mahoning County Commissioner David Engler and Boardman Township Trustee Robyn Gallitto. The 33rd District encompasses several counties, but Mahoning is the largest.

Each county Democratic Party has the option of submitting a list of names to Senate Democratic Minority Leader Capri Cafaro of Liberty Township. Cafaro and her leadership team will review the names and then make a recommendation to the Democratic caucus.

With Lowry in the mix, Congressman Ryan's presence would loom large. He is being touted by state Democrats as a possible challenger to Republican U.S. Sen. George V. Voinvoich in 2010. Ryan also has established a close relationship with Gov. Ted Strickland.

With electability being a major consideration for the caucus, Lowry's past political record will undoubtedly be an issue. However, Ryan's political coattails would have to be considered. In addition, the congressman's agenda for the Mahoning Valley is one that Lowry has been involved in developing and is working on.

Lowry's bid would force local and state Democats to face an issue that so far has not been on the radar screen: The advantage of having a rising-star congressman with a professional and personal relationship with a Democratic state senator.

RYAN PROVIDES INSIGHT INTO THE AUTO INDUSTRY BAILOUT DEBATE: On Saturday morning, the congressman was a guest on "The Valley's Talkin,'" a one-hour talk show on WGFT-AM 1330 hosted by Dr. William C. Binning and this writer. The congressman's explanation of what occurred this week in Washington and what can be expected in a couple of weeks was revealing and insightful.

The show will be re-broadcast on Sunday (Nov. 23) from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. and an audiotape version will be available on Vindy.com next week.


1JimRhodes(2 comments)posted 7 years, 6 months ago

Lowry should get in the 33rd hunt He has a lot to offer especially his ties to Ryan will help the Valley-he can be the go between with Strickland Engler is tainted why did he resign as commissioner and then Gains threatened to reveal the findings against Engler by the Court if he ran for prosecutor so backed away and hooked up with Marty Y--plus he left his wife and kids-- Besides Engler knows no one in Columbus -- no Engler!! Gillito is a a nut and no one knows the guy from Poland except he has a lot uf DUIS
I say Go Lowry he could help the Valley !!!

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2valleygadfly(3 comments)posted 7 years, 6 months ago

Jim your post is a testament to everything that is wrongheaded with Valley politics. You state that Lowry has "a lot to offer" then fail to state any of his credentials with the exception his connection to Ryan. You also fail to mention that the citizens of Youngstown apparently didn't feel he had "a lot" to offer when he was soundly defeated, twice, in his bid for president of Youngstown City Council. That's the thing about political popularity, Jim, it cannot be transferred from one candidate to another, it must be earned.
The Valley doesn't need a "go between with Strickland" it needs a dedicated servant who's been here in the Valley attempting to address the very real problems we've been going through rather than spending the majority of his time in the intellectual bubble known as Washington, D.C.
Access to Strickland will be guaranteed no matter who is chosen to fill the seat. It's not like there is an excess of democrats in the state senate; and the candidate chosen is sure to have his/her ear. The same would apply to Ryan if he really cares about the Valley.
In closing. I'd say I'd hope your personal attacks on the other potential appointees are not a reflection of your chosen candidate's view's:
"Gallito is a nut." There is nothing wrong with disagreeing with positions she's taken, and you can attempt to marginalize her on those if you wish, but your use of sleazy generalizations gives the perception that, rather than conveying the policy positions and qualifications of your chosen candidate, you'd rather resort to ad homonym personal attacks.
"Engler is tainted why did he resign as commissioner and then Gains threatened to reveal the findings against Engler by the Court if he ran for prosecutor so backed away and hooked up with Marty Y--plus he left his wife and kids-- Besides Engler knows no one in Columbus -- no Engler!!" This is very interesting and leads me to believe that you have a personal ax to grind against Engler. Based on your statements we're supposed to believe that prosecutor Gains threatened Engler with revealing information he was privy to (which, by the way, is an insult to the integrity to prosecutor Gains and would be an ethical violation as well) if Engler ran for prosecutor. Let's humor you in your delusions and say that which you have stated is true. Do you really think that the threat would have ceased the moment Engler abandoned his bid for prosecutor and threw himself behind the OPPONENT OF GAINS????? And I don't think Ryan wants marital and relationship problems to become the centerpiece of the selection process for any higher office as he's divorced himself......

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3valleygadfly(3 comments)posted 7 years, 6 months ago

....Lastly, the question is not who one "knows" in Columbus but rather what they know about the legislative process and how to work within the established rules to ensure that the Valley receives its fair share from the state Treasury.
"no one knows the guy from Poland except he has a lot uf DUIS" By your reasoning (that a misdemeanor disqualifies one form holding public office) your boy Lowry would never have had the opportunity to establish "ties" to Ryan because Ryan would have been ineligible based on his own inconsequential criminal offenses!
Jim your post represents everything that's wrong with politics today in the Valley, state, and federal Government: You have a candidate who you obviously support and, rather than talk about his qualifications and the plans he has to represent the Valley in the Senate, you choose to talk about "connections" and mindlessly bash others with unsubstantiated claims that have no bearing on their ability to effectively advance the concerns of this Valley and it's population.
Many had doubts about Capri Cafaro but she's proven herself a leader and a very hard working public servant. Capri needs a candidate who's electable and can work with her in the Senate to pass legislation that improves the Valley and the State of Ohio. Let's end the cronyism now and start working toward a better future.
The Valley school districts are starving for money; we lag behind the rest of the state in employment and wages; crime is rampant and we face the prospect of having to layoff safety forces due to lack of funds; GM is facing the prospect of bankruptcy due to corporate greed, etc. And you choose to sling mud and hype connections to the good-old boy network, rather than convey your candidate's position on these very important issues.

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4valleygadfly(3 comments)posted 7 years, 6 months ago

What this Valley needs is a complete break from the good-old-boy network. We don't need to select one of the same old faces connected to the machine politics of the Valley.

The ideal candidate would be someone fairly new to the political scene who has experience on the executive level of politics and doesn't carry baggage like the good-old-boys seeking the seat. Someone who has actually ran a township or city on an executive level- negotiating contracts with safety forces and working hard to get levies passed. Executive administrative experience should be the main criteria of the selection process.

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