Middletown man to run against Boehner in 2014
Middletown resident Andy Hounshell announced his intent April 12 to run as a democratic opponent to republican John Boehner, current Ohio District 8 Representative and Speaker of the House of Representatives.
A military veteran, husband, father of triplets and Miami University Middletown alumnus, Hounshell said he believes he will be a viable option when voters approach the ballot box in 2014.
Hounshell is the vice president of International Association of Machinist and Aerospace Workers Local Lodge 1943. In such capacity, he represents the interests of over 1600 Middletown AK Steel employees.
The 37-year-old AK Steel employee announced his candidacy for the 2014 election at Forest Hills Country Club in Middletown, Ohio.
"In 2012, when I went to the ballot to vote, it was disheartening to see there was no one else on the ballot," Hounshell said. "I thought that's not democracy as we know it with only one person to vote for."
Kathy Wyenandt, central committee chair of the Butler County Democratic Party, said Hounshell is an appealing candidate because he was a republican for most of his life and thus understands the republican point of view.
Hounshell said he grew up identifying as a Republican, but that after looking more closely at certain Republican positions, he realized his views were out of sync with those of the party. Hounshell wrote a piece "Why I'm a Democrat," in which he discussed this revelation.
Hounshell introduced President Barack Obama when he spoke in September at Eden Park in Cincinnati.
"People naturally avoid conflict," Hounshell said. "People don't jump into conversations that involve conflict and politics is one of those types of conversation."
Hounshell said he wants to encourage people to get involved and take the time to sit down and look at what exactly their party believes and how their beliefs compare. He said he hopes people will look at policy, and really look at how their representatives vote.
Hounshell says the age of current Speaker Boehner versus himself also plays a factor.
"The Speaker is 63 years old," Hounshell said. "When he was in college quote some time ago, things were a lot different. Not that I'm a whole lot younger, but at 37, I've always been a non-traditional student."
Hounshell said an issue of particular importance to him is higher education and the many pitfalls and spirals that can consume students, leading to financial ruin and wasted time. It's time to end the process of universities consistently raising tuition, taking advantage of guaranteed loans and adding to the mountains of debt students must bear, according to Hounshell.
Hounshell also serves as a United Way Fundraising Director, EAP Chairman, Grievance Committee Chairman and Political Action Committee member for the union's local lodge.
Junior Rebecca O'Neal said it's great to have someone step up to the plate and give people the choice to vote.
"People want options," O'Neal said. "In today's day and age, especially in the younger generation, we want the choice to choose who will represent us in Congress. Having another name one the ballot can give us that option."
Hounshell is looking for interns to work on his campaign.
"Anyone that would be interested in helping out on basically any level, whether it be with social media or with stuffing envelopes that would be helpful," Hounshell said.
Students interested in more information can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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