In a tragic (for us) turn of events, an Ohio elections board has ruled that former Rep. Jim Traficant cannot run for the U.S. House after failing to get enough signatures to put his name on the ballot.
Traficant, who was released from prison last fall after serving seven years for corruption, filed the paperwork in May to run for the 17th House district as an independent. But now, as the Youngstown Vindicator reports, the Trumbull County Board of Elections has disqualified Traficant. According to the board, Traficant only had 2,092 valid signatures — 107 short of the required 2,199.
Traficant held the same seat for nine terms until 2002, when he was convicted on 10 felony counts of racketeering, bribery and tax evasion and expelled from the House. Traficant has maintained his innocence while railing against the IRS, promising to “kick them in the crotch real good” and vowing to repeal the 16th Amendment.
A Traficant adviser told the AP he plans to appeal the ruling.
The seat is current held by Rep. Tim Ryan (D), who has been in office since Traficant was thrown out and is running for re-election.