Latest Celebrity Endorsement in Ohio Governor's Race: 'Modern Family' Actor Ed O'Neill


After news last week that rocker Dave Matthews would be playing an acoustic set in support of Ohio gubernatorial candidate Dennis Kucinich, challenger Joe Schiavoni, the Mahoning Valley state senator who has struggled to attain name recognition statewide, has battled back with a celebrity endorsement of his own.

It's actor Ed O'Neill! (Not to be confused with challenger Bill "Hayloft" O'Neill.)

The Youngstown-born and raised actor of Modern Family fame has asked Ohio voters to consider Schiavoni in a new ad (above). O'Neill says Schiavoni will continue to work for Ohio families and Ohio jobs.

"I'm not telling you how to vote," O'Neill says. "But I am going to ask you to consider Joe for Governor, cuz I don't think you'll be disappointed."

Schiavoni, whom Scene has compared favorably more than once to a JV football coach, should get all our votes instantly if he convinces O'Neill to reenact his Little Giants pre-game speech on the day before the primary. 

"Tonight when you go home, I want you to brush your little teeth. I want you to wash your little faces. And I want you to dream the sweet dreams of football glory, cuz tomorrow we're going to crush the Little Giants into smithereens."

Elsewhere on the trail, Dennis Kucinich is putting out flames after the 24-year-old son of his running mate, Akron City Councilwoman Tara Samples, posted an inflammatory threat on his Facebook page. The Kucinich campaign released a statement:

Tara speaks openly and publicly about her experiences with her son who since childhood has suffered from a variety of mental health issues, and later in life a drug and opioid addiction after suffering a traumatic brain injury. His mental health issues have led to arrests and criminal charges. He has multiple mental health diagnoses and has been in treatment and rehabilitation facilities many times over the past many years.

It is that very personal, very painful, but deeply loving experience that has made Tara one of the most vocal, passionate, and knowledgeable advocates in the state for changes in the public health system, addiction treatment and rehabilitation programs, mental health services, and criminal justice practices that too often emphasize punitive incarceration rather than treatment and counseling.

Richard Cordray's running mate, Betty Sutton, is in Columbus this afternoon announcing a "major initiative" to address "persistent gender gaps" in Ohio. She's holding a press conference at 2 p.m. at the Ohio Federation of Teachers office.

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