Three candidates drop out of council race; no need for primary
Tuesday, March 15, 2011 02:22 PM
By Doug Caruso
The Columbus Dispatch
Republicans and Libertarians reached a deal today that cancels the need for a Columbus City Council primary and ensures that two candidates from each of those parties are on the ballot in November.
Republicans Joe and Alicia Healy and Libertarian Andrew S. Ullman agreed to withdraw from the race, leaving eight candidates for the four council seats open this year, said Brad Sinnott, chairman of the Franklin County Republican Party Central Committee.
The city charter requires a primary only if there are more than two candidates for each open seat.
Sinnott said both parties agreed it was best to conserve their campaign resources for the November contest rather than fighting one another for spots on that ballot.
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"The Libertarians and the Republicans looked at the cost of a primary and took into account how wealthy the incumbent Democratic candidates will be because of the contributions from people who do business with the city and who want to influence policy decisions at City Hall," he said.
Remaining on the ballot are Republicans Matthew Ferris and Daryl Hennessy; Libertarians Mark Noble and Robert Bridges; and Democrats Andrew J. Ginther, Hearcel F. Craig, Zachary M. Klein and Michelle M. Mills.
Noble said he and Sinnott began discussing the move about a week ago.
"David has gotten the attention of Goliath in this race," Noble said. "It's nice to be getting some recognition from the big guys that we pose a bit of a threat."
Despite the deal to reduce the number of candidates, the Republicans and Libertarians are not running together as a slate.