A second candidate has entered the race to fill the seat that will be vacated by State Rep. Margaret Ann Ruhl, R-Mount Vernon, next year due to term limits.
Beth Lear, a self-employed legislative policy analyst, has declared her intention to seek the Republican Party’s nomination for the seat. She will face Genoa Township Trustee Rick Carfagna in the March Republican primary.
“I think it’s important that voters have choices,” she said.
A former legislative aide in the Ohio House of Representatives, Lear said she believes that experience will be invaluable, if she is elected.
“It is helpful to have some experience,” she said. “What I don’t think is helpful is to be a career politician with no idea of how the world works. It’s good to have both the inside and the outside perspective.”
A veteran of the Ohio National Guard, Lear said her goal as a state legislator would be to get government out of the way. “We need stronger leaders who are going to take seriously the fact that government is too involved in people’s lives,” she said.
One of the ways in which Lear hopes to get government out of people’s lives is by providing school districts with more local control and scrapping Common Core educational standards.
She said she would look to strengthen the economy by lowering taxes and downsizing government.
“I love our district, our state and our country, and I think it’s time that we started doing what’s best for future generations – for our kids and grandkids,” she said.
The 68th Ohio House District, which Lear hopes to represent, is comprised of the eastern portion of Delaware County and all of Knox County.
The district is heavily Republican. Last year Ruhl won re-election with 66 percent of the vote.
Lear ran an unsuccessful campaign in 2010 for the now-reconfigured 2nd Ohio House District. She lost to State Rep. Andrew Brenner, R-Powell, in a six-person Republican primary. Lear finished third in the race.
Dustin Ensinger can be reached at 740-413-0902 or on Twitter @EnsingerDG.