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Friday, October 26, 2007

OH-07 Dems: Is A Pizza Maker Qualified For Congress?

CIRCLEVILLE, Ohio (TD) -- Dave Woolever owns Peppy's Pizza and he's running for the Democratic nomination in an eight-county congressional district across west central Ohio that is rock-ribbed Republican. Dave Hobson, the current occupant of the GOP seat, plans to retire at the end of his term. Woolever is steamed because another Democrat in the race -- a Purdue-trained engineer who once served as an Air Force intelligence officer -- delivered a deep dish about the pizza business. Bill Conner doesn't think much of Woolever's line of work.

Conner was the OH-07 Dem nominee in 2006 and polled 85,201 votes in the general election that year. He wants another shot. But he has to get past Woolever in the primary next March and recently remarked:

"Twelve years of making pizzas does not qualify you for Congress."

Woolever believes it was a cheesy comment. He says he became a small business owner in Circleville after his jobs out of high school were outsourced to foreign nations. He thinks that experience -- being globalized, unemployed and starting over from scratch -- makes him well-qualified for the House because he knows first-hand how tough the Ohio job and business climate has become.

"In 1992 I was laid off whem my job was outsourced to Mexico. In my next position, it was becoming clear that the same thing was about to happen. Facing this challenge, I took a risk and started my business. This is the American dream and what we should encourage in this country. To attack small business owners shows that the Conner campaign doesn't have the understanding of what drives the American economy."

Years ago, when Gov. Ted Strickland was a somewhat forlorn Democrat campaigning and losing often in a solidly Republican southern Ohio district, he was disparaged as a prison psychologist -- he worked at the Lucasville pen. But lightning struck and Strickland toppled former U.S. Rep. Bob McEwan during the 1992 Congressional check bouncing scandal. Bill Conner's web site is here, and he might think about holding the cheese.

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