Wednesday, November 6, 2002

Ohio State Offices

GOP dominance continues

The Associated Press

COLUMBUS - Republicans will continue their domination of Ohio's top nonjudicial offices, sweeping all five positions on Tuesday's ballot.

Republicans have controlled the jobs of governor, attorney general, auditor, secretary of state and treasurer since 1994.

Besides governor, the most watched and closest race was Treasurer Joe Deters holding off a challenge from Democrat Mary Boyle. Gov. Bob Taft easily won re-election, defeating Democrat Tim Hagan.

Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell beat state Rep. Bryan Flannery of Lakewood 60 percent to 40 percent.

Attorney General Betty Montgomery and Auditor Jim Petro, blocked from running for re-election because of term limits, traded jobs. Ms. Montgomery beat Cleveland City Councilwoman Helen Smith, 65 percent to 35 percent, and Mr. Petro defeated state Sen. Leigh Herington of Ravenna 65 percent to 35 percent.

"It's an honor to take on a new responsibility, one I've dreamed of my whole career,'' Mr. Petro said.

Mr. Blackwell said the sweep gives Republicans "four more years to be leader servants ... to create more opportunities for the people of Ohio and we will not let them down.''

Ms. Montgomery, 54, of Perrysburg, said her experience would translate to the new job.

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