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Renacci, Gibbs re-elected to U.S. House

  • 110816RenacciPartyAF-jpg

    Ninety people reserved their spot at the Jim Renacci watch party at the Galaxy Banquet Hall in Wadsworth. Tickets were free. A buffet and cash bar were available.

    ASHLEY FOX / GAZETTE

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    About 90 people made reservations to attend a watch party on election night for U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci, R-Wadsworth, on Tuesday night.

    ASHLEY FOX / GAZETTE

U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci, R-Wadsworth, appeared easing into another term representing the 16th Congressional District on Tuesday over newcomer Keith Mundy, a Parma Democrat.

With 57 percent of the votes tabulated, according to the secretary of state’s office, Renacci had 134,497 votes while 73,030 ballots were cast for Mundy.

“It’s always an honor to be elected to represent” voters of the 16th District, Renacci said.

Renacci was seeking re-election to a fourth term.

The district spans parts of Medina, Cuyahoga, Summit, Stark and Wayne counties.

In the other congressional race that includes a portion of Medina County, U.S. Rep. Bob Gibbs, R-Lakeville, also appeared to be having a smooth re-election for the 7th District seat.

He was challenged by Democrat Roy Rich, a former Cleveland law enforcement officer, and independent Dan Phillip of Ashland County.

With 57 percent of the votes counted, Gibbs had 64 percent of votes —149,423 — while Rich, of Eaton Township in Lorain County, had 29 percent, 68,728 votes. Phillip trailed with 7 percent, 16,048 votes.

Renacci, 57, was born in Monongahela, Pa., and moved to Wadsworth more than 30 years ago. In 2004, he was elected mayor of the city and served through 2008.

Renacci formerly owned the Renacci-Doraty Chevrolet auto dealership in Wadsworth until 2009, when General Motors filed for bankruptcy.

Renacci has said his disappointment about the federal government’s bailout of General Motors case was a factor in prompting him to run for Congress in 2009.

Mundy, 66, was born in Akron and grew up in Summit County. He owned businesses including Straight Shooter T-shirts, Rock n’ Roll Music and Games and court documents delivery service.

His political activity began 15 months ago when he joined what he called a “movement” in Ohio on behalf of the Democratic presidential campaign of U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., during the 2016 Democratic presidential primary season. Sanders lost the nomination to Hillary Clinton, a former secretary of state and U.S. senator from New York.

While working on Sanders’ Ohio operation, Mundy said he decided to run for Congress against Renacci.

In an October interview with the Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce, Gibbs said he wanted to cut government spending, reform the tax code, reduce unnecessary regulations that “hamper” small business and “promote an energy policy that encourages the responsible development of our own natural resources.”

Gibbs is a graduate of Bay Village High School and Ohio State University’s Agricultural Technical Institute.

He founded Hidden Hollow Farms, a livestock production farm in Holmes County, in the 1970s. He was president of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation for two terms beginning in 1999.

In 2002, he won election to the Ohio House of Representatives, was re-elected twice and then won an Ohio Senate seat in 2008.

Contact reporter Ashley Fox at (330) 721-4048 or afox@medina-gazette.com.



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