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Ryan Running for Ohio Lieutenant Governor

Updated: 10:51 A.M.

Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) will announce a bid for lieutenant governor later this week, according to the Washington Post.

Ryan would run alongside Gov. Ted Strickland (D) to succeed Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher (D), who is running for Senate in 2010. Ryan, a four-term Democrat, also considered running to replace retiring Sen. George Voinovich (R-Ohio), but he decided against it and has backed Fisher’s bid.

An official spokesman for Ryan, Brad Bauman, acknowledged in an e-mail message that the Congressman was on Strickland’s short list of possible lieutenant governor candidates. Bauman could not confirm, however, that Ryan was looking to leave Capitol Hill for Columbus, Ohio, at the end of his term.

“We understand from news reports that Congressman Ryan is on the list of potential running mates for Governor Strickland,— Bauman said. “He is certainly honored just to be mentioned.—

Ryan’s departure would leave his northeastern Ohio seat open in 2010. Democrats have controlled the 17th district seat for more than 20 years, and observers say state Senate Minority Leader Capri Cafaro (D) would be an early favorite for the post.

Cafaro has run for Congress twice before. In 2004, she waged a successful primary campaign but ultimately lost in the general election to Rep. Steven LaTourette (R); in 2006, Capri lost the primary to now-Rep. Betty Sutton (D) in a bid for Sen. Sherrod Brown’s (D) open House seat.

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