WILLOUGHBY HILLS -- Fourteen people will sit down Friday afternoon and select the 14th District Congressional candidate who will replace U.S. Rep. Steve LaTourette on the Novmber 6 ballot.
LaTourette, 59, of Bainbridge Township, officially announced Wednesday that he would not seek re-election but had told others as early as July 31 that he would not run for re-election.
The nine-term Congressman cited Washington's political gridlock and the inability to get anything done.
Related story: Web extra: Watch WKYC's Tom Beres interview with LaTourette
The Republican Party has until 4 p.m. Aug. 13 to nominate a new candidate. The 14th Congressional District consists of Lake, Geauga, Ashtabula and parts of Cuyahoga, Portage, Summit and Trumbull counties.
The vote will take place during a meeting at 2 p.m. Friday at the Willoughby Hills Community Center.
The 14 people who will select LaTourette's replacement are the seven Republican county chairmen/chairwomen and each county's county central committee secretaries in the 14th District.
The seven chairmen/chairwomen are: Charlie Frye (Ashtabula County); Rob Frost (Cuyahoga County); Ed Ryder (Geauga County); Dale Fellows (Lake County); Janet Esposito (Portage County); Alex Arshinkoff (Summit County); and Kathi Creed (Trumbull County).
Each will bring their county's county central committee secretary, each of whom will also have a vote.
LaTourette timed his withdrawal by officially announcing it on Wednesday, Aug. 8. That means that no Republican primary would be held and the 14 would make the selection.
Nearly 20 people have expressed interest in being selected. They include:
- Geauga County Prosecutor David Joyce
- Former state Rep. Matt Dolan
- Cuyahoga County Councilman Jack Schron
- State Rep. Ron Young
- Lake County Common Pleas Judge Vincent Culotta
- Willoughby-Eastlake school board member Paul Brickner
- Former 11th Dist. Appeals Judge Colleen Mary O'Toole
- Former state Rep. Ann Womer Benjamin
Also mentioned were Geauga County Probate/Juvenile Judge Tim Grendell and his wife, Diane Grendell, now an appeals court judge, but both said they would not put their name into consideration.
Whomever is chosen will face Democrat Dale Blanchard, of Solon; Libertarian candidate David Macko, also of Solon; and Green Party candidate Elaine R. Mastromatteo.