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Republican Cuyahoga County Judges Joan Synenberg and Wanda Jones lose election to former Cleveland City Council president Kevin Kelley and Cleveland Councilman Brian Mooney, respectively, both Kelley and Mooney Democrats....By

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CLEVELAND, Ohio-Republican Judges Wanda Jones and Joan Synenberg (pictured) lost their seats on the 34-member Cuyahoga County Common Pleas general division court in Tuesday's election, Jones, who is Black, losing to former Cleveland Council President Kevin Kelley, who lost a nonpartisan mayoral runoff to current Mayor Justin Bibb by a landslide last year, and Synenberg losing to west side Cleveland Ward 11 Councilman Brian Mooney, also an attorney.

Kelley and Mooney are Democrats, Kelley also a former vice chair of the county Democratic party who represented Cleveland's ward 13 from 2005-2022 .

Synenberg lost to Mooney by roughly 700 votes, according to  unofficial results of the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections, which sits in downtown Cleveland at east 30th and Euclid Avenue.

A former Cleveland Municipal Court judge, Synenberg has been on the common pleas bench since 2007 though she lost reelection in 2013 to current Democratic Judge Cassandra Collier Williams and was appointed back to the court by then Gov John Kasich. She later won election to a full term that concludes in January of 2023.

Jones was appointed to the court in December of 2021 to replace Joseph D. Russo, who suddenly died while in office She previously served as a judge  from January of 2019 to December of  2000, losing election to an unexpired term to Democratic Judge Richard Bell, who was elected on Tuesday to a full term relative to the seat.

Ohio judges are elected to six -year terms, and judicial races  in Ohio are nonpartisan as to how a judge's name appears on the ballot. But technically they remain political, critics argue, and if Synenberg and Jones were Republican they would have had a far better chance of convincing voters to keep them on the bench in heavily Democratic Cuyahoga County. Also at issue is that voter turnout was at 47 percent in the county, which was more helpful to Democrats in getting out the Democratic vote in a Democratic town, though it was down from 63 percent in 2016 when Donald Trump ran for president.

Cuyahoga County is the second largest of Ohio's 88 counties and Cleveland, a largely Black major American city, is its largest city. It is a Democratic stronghold primarily controlled by the Dems. Republicans, however, hold every statewide office, including the governor's office, other than three seats on the Ohio Supreme Court and a U.S. Senate seat held by Sen. Sherrod Brown of Cleveland, a seasoned member of Congress and Ohio's most prominent Democrat.

The other Senate seat is held by retiring GOP Sen Rob Portman, whom political newcomer J.D. Vance, a venture capitalist, lawyer and author, will succeed after winning Tuesday's general election over outgoing Tim Ryan, a longtime congressman out of the Youngstown area. Ryan ran for the U.S.senate rather than for a congressional seat following redistricting that shut out a great part of his congressional district.

By Kathy Wray Coleman, associate publisher, editor-in-chief (Coleman is a former biology teacher and a seasoned Black journalist, and an investigative, legal, scientific, and political reporter who trained for 17 years at the Call and Post Newspaper in Cleveland, Ohio). and the most read Black digital newspaper and blog in Ohio and in the Midwest Tel: (216) 659-0473. Email: We interviewed former president Barack Obama one-on-one when he was campaigning for president. As to the Obama interview, CLICK HERE TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE AT CLEVELAND URBAN NEWS.COM, OHIO'S LEADER IN BLACK DIGITAL NEWS.

Last Updated on Friday, 30 December 2022 16:16


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