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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Supreme Court Hopeful Bill O'Neill Labeled 'A Knucklehead' By Ohio Senate Dem Leader: Insults Fly In Statewide Judicial Primary

Dem Primary Becoming Bareknuckled Brawl
CINCINNATI (TDB) -- State Sen. Eric Kearney, a Cincinnati lawyer sworn in today as the chamber's top Democrat, has come out fighting for his friend and political ally, Hamilton County Municipal Court Judge Fanon Rucker.   Kearney told a rally of Cincinnati area Democrats last night that Rucker's opponent in the March 6 primary is "a knucklehead" whose lack of political and campaign wisdom "will turn a seat over to the Republicans" on the Ohio Supreme Court.  Kearney didn't identify the knucklehead by name (he did use the term twice).  But he was talking about William O'Neill, a Cleveland area Democrat who jumped into the race last month.

Sen. Eric Kearney
Although he's been out of office for several years, O'Neill is a former state appeals court judge who was decorated for service in Vietnam during the war.  So there is a generation gap (Rucker was born just as the war was ending) though not so much a geography gap because Rucker has gotten traction upstate.  He has snagged the Ohio Democratic Party endorsement, along with backing from the county parties in Cleveland and Youngstown.  Rucker was in the Senate chamber today to give Kearney the oath of office as minority leader -- the judge clearly has friends in high places.


So what exactly is a knucklehead?  Webster's New World Dictionary says it is a slang expression for "a stupid person; fool."  Senate leader Kearney was particularly upset that O'Neill won't accept donations to finance his campaign, which means he's running a futile effort, that he's unilaterally disarmed.  Said Kearney: "This man Fanon Rucker was born to be a Supreme Court Justice . . He's got an opponent, a knucklehead, and he's got to get past this primary."


Rucker, 40, said he got into the race last year expecting that he could concentrate on the general election:.  "Originally I didn't have an opponent.  I was running for November.  All I can do for this primary is ask people to take a look, ask them to investigation, ask them to spread the word about me.  Right now, the momentum in my campaign is incredible.  I'm getting endorsements.  I got Mahoning County and that was important . . . I truly have the desire to ensure public trust in the system."


O'Neill can dish it out, and he's wrongly described Rucker as nothing more than a 'judge in traffic court."  In Hamilton County, the Muny Court has countywide jurisdiction and while it does handle traffic tickets, it also handles misdemeanor crimes and civil cases up to $25,000.  The dockets are varied and frequently involve jury trials.  In a comment on Ohio Daily Blog earlier this month, O'Neill disparaged Rucker and said supporters should not delude themselves.  He said Rucker might not be electable in his own county:
"Sorry to rain on everybody's parade here, but last night was THE FIRST EVENT in the primary race since I was placed on the ballot. And the vote by the Trumbull County Democratic Party was 135 for O'Neill and 15 for Rucker. Let's look at some numbers here folks. Judge Rucker seems to be a very nice guy, and there is no question the Hamilton County Democratic Party arranged for him to be APPOINTED a Judge in traffic court. Since then the local party has seen to it that he has had no opponents, so his electability, even in Hamilton County, is very much in question. There is no question about qualifications. I have served a decade on the Court of Appeals, where I was elected and re-elected in a five county area, and I have sat on the Supreme Court of Ohio by assignment. I even have more judicial experience than the incumbent Justice Cupp! So let the race begin. But please, my friends, don't delude yourself. I am the favorite in this primary and I am going to win. Peace. Judge William Michael O'Neill"
Bill O'Neill's campaign website is available by clicking here.  And you can click here to check out Rucker for Justice.

12 comments:

  1. The Ghost of Bill MalloryJanuary 31, 2012 9:19 PM

    Let me get this straight. Bill O'Neill is a knucklehead for unilaterally disarming, but Bruce Whitman is a noble genius for unilaterally disarming. I just want to make sure I keep my double standards straight.

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    1. At least you are not writing troll comments for Pat DeWine on your county supplied computer tonight.

      Bruce Whitman is indeed a noble genius.

      I noticed that you did not mention DeWine's IQ. Let me get this straight, no doubt because you know it falls short of genius.

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    2. Bruce Whitman, MENSA wannabeJanuary 31, 2012 11:19 PM

      Poor Jake Whitman. Nothing better to do but make anonymous comments about the race your daddy is about to lose. It will be extremely frustrating getting destroyed on election night by someone you consider to be your daddy's intellectual inferior.

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    3. I have to laugh at the above anonymous commenter.

      Upon watching this moronic back and forth I went to DeWine's website. Looks like the guy graduated with a perfect 4.0 in college and then in the top 10% of his law school graduating class.

      I tried to check Bruce Whitman's academic achievements, but his website has no information on his school records. Regardless of whatever Bruce Whitman's intellect is, you look dumb questioning DeWine's.

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  2. This exchange is making me Hun-Ga-Ry!

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  3. Oh, the astroturfer from the Republcan side who just happened to check Pat DeWine's website to learn he had a 4.0. Had to be the only visit to the website that day. LOL.

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    1. Donkey Turf BuilderFebruary 01, 2012 8:07 PM

      Looks like the astroturfer from the Democratic side might want to spend less time on the blogs propping up a loser candidate and instead should offer to proofread for the flailing Whitman campaign. At least take up a collection to buy poor genius Bruce a calculator.

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  4. Bill O'Neill's deficit as a Supreme Court candidate for the ODP has to be the color of his skin. He has the background and experience. He is loyal to his party. Yes, he is not African American, thus he is unacceptable.

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  5. addin' aint easyFebruary 01, 2012 4:24 PM

    Haha. Just checked Whitman's website, which looks like it was done by an 8th grader. "Genius" Bruce Whitman links to a copy of his fundraising letter that Bill Sloat wrote about a couple of weeks ago. In it he promises to limit his donors to half of the legal limit of $1150, or $625. Sorry Bruce, but half of $1150 is actually $575. You don't need to be a genius to figure that out. Heck, you shouldn't even need a calculator to do that simple math.

    Was Whitman just careless, or is he just plain dumb? Which one is a worst quality for a judge? I hope he puts more thought into his math when he's calculating prison sentences. What a dolt. Superb IQ - highly doubtful.

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    1. I do need to point out as a member of the Cuyahoga County executive committee, that the county party didn't exactly choose Rucker over O'Neill: we were basically given the entire ODP-endorsed slate and asked to ratify it. Someone stood up on the floor and mentioned that O'Neill was in the race, and we were told we needed to accept the state party's endorsements. I would not have voted for Rucker, given the choice. I think his qualifications for the job are weak, and he's a weaker statewide candidate with no name recognition at all in this part of the state and no experience campaigning statewide. And given the state party's track record of A. supporting supreme court candidates and B. electing African-Americans statewide, he's a sure loser. And given B., an issue the party needs to address, I think he will help take Yvette McGee Brown down with him.

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  6. Everyone in Cincinnati knows who Bill O'Neill is. He was the Browns quarterback, er, pitched for the Indians, er, discovered the Internet, er, er, er . . . invented the knuckleball. OK, who is this guy? O'Neill is obscure around Ohio and Rucker has the ODP endorsement. And your insinuation about O'Neill/Rucker skin color is reprehensible. Please stand for the proposition that two Democrats can run against each other without bringing race into it.

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  7. Nurse O'Neill hasn't practiced law in the last 5 years and people know that the law changes at the SPEED OF LIGHT! Nurse O'Neill has lost his last 4 elections...time for him to check in at the ER instead of the Ohio Supreme Court.

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