DeWine Quitting Commission To Run For Common Pleas Judge

(CINCINNATI) -- Pat DeWine says he has no plans to return to the Hamilton County commission.

Instead, DeWine filed paperwork on Thursday to run for Hamilton County common pleas judge.

DeWine has been a familiar face in Cincinnati politics for almost a decade, first as a member of Cincinnati city council, then as a Hamilton County commissioner.

Statement from Pat DeWine:

I wanted you to be one of the first to know of a recent decision I made regarding the 2008 campaign. I hope I can count on your continued support in this new endeavor over the next year.

Tomorrow, I intend to file for election for a seat on the Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas. It was certainly a difficult decision, but one that I am very excited about.

I made the decision to run for Judge, rather than seek reelection as Commissioner, for a combination of personal and professional reasons. For me the matter came down to a weighing of three considerations: (1) where could I make the most difference for the citizens of Hamilton County over the coming years, (2) what was best for my children, and (3) where I could put my abilities to best use.

I've spent the past eight years in public service: first as a member of City Council and then as a member of the Hamilton County Commission. What has always drawn me to public office is that it is a way to improve the lives of people, a way to make a difference in the world. I've come to the conclusion that the place I can make the most difference is as a Judge. The job of a Judge of the Court of Common Pleas is a tremendously important one, and I begin the race with a great respect for the office. The office is entrusted with decisions that affect the safety of our neighborhoods and the daily lives of countless citizens. I believe it is crucial we have judges who will administer the law impartially, who understand the importance of orderly and safe neighborhoods, and who will treat all citizens fairly. I also believe it is important, at all levels of government, to have elected officials who respect taxpayer dollars. These are values that I will bring to the office.

During my years on Council, I saw first-hand the importance of the decisions of our judicial officials to the safety and quality of life of our neighborhoods. As an attorney, I've observed the impact that good judicial decision making can have on those before the court. While being judge may not always be as high profile as serving on the County Commission, it is a position that has a real effect on the people who come before the court and on our the welfare of our neighborhoods. I believe I can make a real difference as judge.

More importantly, though, my children are now 11, 9 and 5. As you may know, in addition to my public service, I have maintained an active and busy law practice for the past twelve years. While I love both my jobs as Commissioner and as an attorney, the demands of trying to do both can at times be significant. I'm not one to do anything halfway, and devote considerable time and energy to both. As a Judge, of course, I will have to give up my private law practice. While I will miss the private practice of the law, I look forward to being able to focus on one job and believe that my doing so is what's best for my three sons.

Finally, I look forward to a new challenge. I've spent eight years in the rough and tumble of partisan elected office. I've fought hard for conservative principles of reform and believe that with the help of many others, I have been able to accomplish a great deal.

But frankly, to serve the public in a somewhat different role is very attractive to me right now. I very much enjoy the practice of law, and since I was 12 years old and watched my father in trial as County Prosecutor, serving as a judge has been something that has appealed to me. After law school, I had the honor of serving as law clerk to the Honorable David A. Nelson on the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, whom I admired and respected greatly for his seriousness of purpose, his keen legal mind and his integrity and fairness.

It wasn't until the past week or so when I became aware that Judge Davis would not seek reelection that I thought seriously about running for this office this year. But as I thought it more and more, I became convinced that this was right decision for me and my family. I believe I am well qualified for the position. In addition to serving as law clerk for Judge Nelson, I have maintained a complex an active national legal practice for the past 12 years, even while serving first as a member of Cincinnati City Council and then on the Hamilton County Commission. My experience on Council and on the Commission has provided me with a wealth of understanding about the problems facing our neighborhoods, which will give me an important perspective as a Judge.

It has been an honor to serve the citizens of Hamilton County over the past three years as Commissioner, and I look forward to continuing to serve for the rest of my term. I believe that we have accomplished a great deal and I am especially proud of our efforts to control the growth of spending and taxation and to reform County government. I simply believe that over the next six years, I can make the most difference for the citizens of Hamilton County as Judge.

Best Regards,

Pat DeWine