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FREMONT REPUBLICAN

Incomplete petitions jeopardize candidacy

88th House incumbent failed to sign 2 petitions

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State Rep. Rex Damschroder (R., Fremont) will try to refile as a write-in candidate for a third two-year term.

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FREMONT — State Rep. Rex Damschroder goofed.

Whether the Fremont Republican will be able to rescue his re-election bid from what he called a simple clerical error was unclear Thursday.

Mr. Damschroder, 64, withdrew his candidacy in the 88th House District on Wednesday after he learned he had left his signature off two petitions, rendering those two petitions invalid. Now he’s waiting to find out whether he'll be able to file as a write-in candidate and get back on the November ballot.

“I take full credit. It was my mistake. It’s been a busy month. I thought I looked them over,” Mr. Damschroder said, noting ruefully the contrast between his happiness at being unopposed in this re-election effort to facing the possible end of his House tenure. “It went from the best to the worst.”

He said Republican Party lawyers in Columbus are exploring whether he can run as a write-in candidate.

It is believed that he will be able to file as a write-in candidate since his candidacy was withdrawn before the Sandusky County Board of Elections considered the petitions for certification. The elections board met to certify candidates Wednesday afternoon but took no action on Mr. Damschroder’s petitions.

The write-in deadline is Feb. 24.

He filed five signature petitions but signed only three of the declarations of candidacy, according to a copy of the petitions obtained by The Blade.

Mr. Damschroder was a state representative from 1995 to 2003 when he had to step down because of term limits. He was elected again in 2010 and 2012. He said he has worked his way up to chairing the House Transportation Committee. The district includes Sandusky County and most of Seneca County.

Contact Tom Troy: tomtroy@theblade.com or 419--724-6058 or an Twitter @TomFTroy.

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