Kucinich plans to stay in Ohio for re-election

Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, in this March 17, 2010 file photo.
AP Photo/Harry Hamburg

Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) plans to run for re-election in Ohio, rather than moving to Washington state as he had mulled doing as part of statewide redistricting plan.

"It is an amazing turn of events that the legislature decided not to dismantle the district I represent," the former Cleveland mayor and presidential candidate said in a prepared statement.

After Ohio's population declined in the 2010 U.S. Census, the state lost two of its 18 congressional districts in the House of Representatives.

Kucinich had feared the new district borders would make it impossible for him to win in Ohio and considered moving to Washington state where he has gained a following from his unsuccessful bids for the White House.

Republicans in Ohio's legislature unveiled proposed boundaries for the 16 new districts Tuesday, and Kucinich's old district remained partially intact.

"I have been praying that I could continue to serve my Cleveland-area constituency and it looks like I have a chance," he said. "That is all I could hope for."

There are five Democrats and 13 Republicans representing Ohio in the current districts.

The Ohio legislature is controlled by Republicans, who made it easier for most of their members to go for re-election.

Herb Asher, a politics professor at the Ohio State University, told CBS News there are benefits to controlling the state legislature.

"What Republicans have done is (create) a plan that is likely to result in 12 Republicans and 4 Democrats" representing Ohio, Asher said.

Rep. Steve Austria and Rep. Michael Turner are the only two current Republicans lawmakers who have will to face each other under the proposed boundaries.

With only four seats competitive for Democrats, Kucinich could face a Democratic ally in the primary election. A spokesman for Rep. Marcy Kaptur told CBS News she is "definitely" going to run for re-election, pitting her against Kucinich.

The Ohio House of Representatives is expected to vote on the plan this week.

Comments

Watch CBSN Live

Watch CBS News anytime, anywhere with the new 24/7 digital news network. Stream CBSN live or on demand for FREE on your TV, computer, tablet, or smartphone.

Watch Now

New Android App

For your Android phone and tablet, download the FREE redesigned app, featuring CBSN, live 24/7 news.

Download
The all new
CBS News App for Android® for iPad® for iPhone®
Fully redesigned. Featuring CBSN, 24/7 live news. Get the App