(WKBN) – Next week, voters in Ohio’s 65th House District will decide between a current representative and a political newcomer.
Republican Mike Loychik and Independent Jennifer Donnelly are both running for the 65th seat.
Loychik currently represents the 63rd district, which was changed to the 65th District during redistricting. He served eight years in the Air Force and is a small business owner.
Donnelly currently works as a veterinarian technician.
Both candidates explain why they chose to run.
“The job is not done yet. We got a lot of potential. The Loychik team has done so much so far in the two years that we’ve been in office,” said Loychik. “All of our statewide officials are Republicans, things like the operating budget and the transportation budget, it does put us at a seat at the table to bring money back to this area.”
Connelly said her status as an Independent gives her an advantage.
“I’m pretty optimistic that as an Independent candidate, I’m not going to be tied to one party in Columbus. I will be able to work for everyone to get things done,” she said.
Loychik believes the biggest issue facing the district is inflation and thinks bringing jobs back to the area would lessen the burden.
“On the state level, I think what we can do is really focus on bringing good, quality jobs making Northeast Ohio a magnet. That way, Ohioans can work here, stay here and provide for their family right here in Northeast Ohio,” Loychik said.
While Donnelly is a political newcomer, she says she decided to run to “step up” after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.
“I believe that women deserve to have access to safe health care and also medical privacy,” she said.
Donnelly also believes there are concerns with the dumping of fracking wastewater and oil and gas wells leaking. She said education and school funding are big issues, too.
“The property taxes that we use to fund our schools in Ohio has been ruled unconstitutional, so I think that finding more funding coming from the state and federal levels for our schools is going to be really important as well,” Donelly said.
The 65th District includes Lordstown, Newton Falls, Brookfield, Champion, all of Northern Trumbull and most of Ashtabula County.