Beacon Journal staff writer
It was deja vu again in the 14th Congressional District.
Republican incumbent Steven C. LaTourette handily defeated Democrat Bill O'Neill, a pediatric emergency room nurse and a retired appeals court judge, in a repeat of the 2008 election.
John Jelenic of Willoughby Hills was the Libertarian Party candidate, as he was in 2008.
The Associated Press declared LaTourette the winner a few minutes after 8 p.m. He had nearly 67 percent of the vote.
LaTourette, 56, of Bainbridge Township in Geauga County, was pleased by the outcome of Tuesday's vote.
''In a year when voter discontent bubbled to the surface, and being an incumbent, to get more than 65 percent of the vote is humbling,'' he said. ''Now it's time to roll up our sleeves and perform. . . . It's all good.''
LaTourette, an attorney and former Lake County prosecutor, said he was surprised by the margin over O'Neill but not the outcome.
He ran well in all seven counties in the district.
The economy remains the No. 1 issue and voters are unhappy with what's happening in Washington, D.C., he said.
More needs to be done to boost the economy, produce jobs and resolve uncertainties for American businesses, he said.
LaTourette was especially critical of President Obama's federal stimulus efforts.
He has touted his efforts to get millions of dollars for highway and infrastructure projects in Northeast Ohio, and save 1,100 Defense Finance and Accounting Service jobs in Cleveland.
O'Neill, 63, of South Russell in Geauga County, had just under 30 percent of the vote in early returns. Jelenic had 2.7 percent.
The district covers all of Ashtabula, Geauga and Lake counties and parts of Summit, Portage, Cuyahoga and Trumbull counties.
Bob Downing can be reached at 330-996-3745 or firstname.lastname@example.org.