State Sen. Steve Buehrer, a Republican candidate for the 5th District congressional seat, hosted a town hall meeting Thursday at Friendly Corners in Norwalk.
Buehrer invited the public and sent invitations to voters throughout Huron County to join him for a question and answer period about issues important to the country, district and the community.
Several dozen voters and interested citizens attended to hear more about Buehrer’s message of conservative leadership on issues such as taxes and spending, illegal immigration and traditional family values.
“I enjoyed the opportunity to talk about issues and ideas facing our country and district last night in Norwalk,” Buehrer said. “The voters in Norwalk are common-sense conservatives who believe in less government and less taxes. I am the only candidate in this race who voted against the biggest tax hike in Ohio history and will take that same leadership to Washington, D.C.
“We believe Huron County will play a major role in this election and look forward to spending more time in Norwalk and Huron County in the next few weeks as we seek the support of voters throughout the district.”
Norwalk resident George Mays also is running to succeed the late U.S. Rep. Paul. E. Gillmor, who was found dead from injuries suffered in a fall in his suburban Washington residence Sept. 5.
The 5th District includes all of Huron County and counties west.
Mays, a Democrat, is one of of nine people running.
One of the leading Republican candidates is state Rep. Robert Latta, a former state senator and county commissioner whose father, Delbert Latta, represented the district for 30 years (1959 to 1989). The younger Latta ran in the 1988 election to succeed his father, but lost the primary to Gillmor by just 27 votes.
Joining Latta in the top tier of candidates for the Nov. 6 primary is Buehrer, a former state House member who hails from the western part of the 5th District.
The GOP field is rounded out by Mark Hollenbaugh, a high school teacher, along with Fred Pieper, Michael Reynolds and Michael Smitley.
The winner of the Republican primary will be heavily favored to win the Dec. 11 special general election, given the typical Republican leanings of 5th District voters. President Bush took 61 percent of the district’s votes in the 2004 election, and Gillmor easily won in each of his 10 general elections.
The best-known candidate on the Democratic side is Robin Weirauch, a former assistant director of the Center for Regional Development at Bowling Green State University. She was the Democratic nominee against Gillmor in 2004 and 2006, taking 33 percent and 43 percent respectively.
Weirauch is joined in the Democratic primary by Earl Campbell, a retired professor, and Mays.
The winner of the general election will succeed Gillmor.