The Campaign Spot

There Goes the Ohio Trekkie Vote

Coming (hopefully) soon to an NRO site near you is my list of 99 open seats or vulnerable House Democrats. On that list, I didn’t include Ohio Democrat Tim Ryan, as his district, the 17th, scores a D+12, and his GOP challengers look pretty inexperienced and underfunded: Dr. M. E. “Bing” Henderson and Jim Graham.

But now there’s the bizarre news that Jim Traficant has a good shot at qualifying for the ballot, and will be running on a platform to eliminate the IRS. Because this is Jim Traficant, and nothing about his campaigns are normal, he’s also filing papers to run in the 6th district, where Democrat Charlie Wilson (no, not the one played by Tom Hanks) is running for reelection.

Could Traficant play spoiler? It’s been ten years since any Ohioan cast a ballot for him. He won 120,000 votes last time he ran, but he was an eight-term incumbent back then, and that was down from 218,283 four years earlier (with no real competition).

UPDATE: I stand corrected: In 2000, Traficant ran from behind bars in an independent bid and finished a distant third with 28,045 votes.

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