A panel of 16th District congressional voters assembled by a nonpartisan group in Minnesota gave higher grades to the economic and budget proposals of U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci, R-Wadsworth.
A panel of 23 voters in the 16th Congressional District, who were recruited by a Minnesota-based group seeking more substantive discourse in politics, gave higher ratings to the proposals and candidacy of congressional candidate U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci, R-Wadsworth, the group Jefferson Action said.
Renacci and his Democratic opponent, U.S. Rep. Betty Sutton of Copley Township, each addressed the panel for about 75 minutes at a forum Saturday in Copley Township. Jefferson Action earlier this year sent out invitations to about 30,000 registered voters in the district, asking them to apply to be on the panel. The Minnesota group said it then selected a diverse group balanced between Democrats, Republicans and independents, which deliberated on ratings of the candidates Saturday and Sunday.
Each of the 23 panelists issued a rating of 1 to 5, with 1 being the weakest and 5 being the strongest. What helped Renacci is that 10 or 11 of the panelists gave Renacci a score of 5 in each category. They said that his work with a bipartisan congressional group he helped organize made a favorable impression on them.
Here were the average scores:
Weak Economic Growth
• Quality of proposals: Renacci 3.74, Sutton 2.78
• Feasibility of proposals: Renacci 4.00, Sutton 3.00
• Quality of proposals: Renacci 4.09, Sutton, 3.00
• Feasibility of proposals: Renacci 3.91, Sutton 2.87
• Quality of proposals: Renacci 3.91, Sutton 2.65
• Feasibility of proposals: Renacci 3.78, Sutton 2.70
• Renacci 4.39, Sutton 2.26
Panelists from Stark County included Bernard Dale Shaffer, 47, of Lake Township, a truck driver; Brenda Hamas, 48, of Lake Township, an operations administrator for Goodyear; Heather Thomas, 26, of North Canton, a management analyst; and Janet Hansen, 75, of Perry Township, a retired teacher.
Hamas, who said she's an independent who leans conservative, said she was impressed by Renacci’s business and finance background, his desire to cut wasteful federal spending, his support for a moratorium on new regulations until unemployment drops and his promise to preserve Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.
“I think Congresswoman Sutton has done a lot of good things for Ohio, but I think he has a better plan right now for us going forward,” she said.
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