Justice Bill O'Neill Calls Ted Strickland 'Walking Dead Man'

WKYC.com | April 13, 2015

In a move that may or may not have shocked fellow Democrats, Ohio Supreme Court Justice Bill O'Neill is urging all his Facebook friends to leave the Ohio Democratic Party.

O'Neill wrote that "When you see Ted, give him a hug and kiss him good bye. He is a walking dead man..."

O'Neill is one of two state officeholders who are Democrats. He wrote the Facebook post on Sunday after the ODP endorsed former Gov. Ted Strickland for the U.S. Senate.

Strickland is to run against Republican U.S. Sen. Rob Portman.

The entire post reads:

Personal heartfelt message to all 2,462 facebook friends. Leave the Ohio Democratic Party immediately. I have just learned that they have made an endorsement in the US Senate race for my dear friend Ted Strickland. When you see Ted, give him a hug and kiss him good bye. He is a walking dead man. It is now very clear to me that we learned NOTHING with the devastating losses last year. NOTHING. I went and heard PG Sittenfeld at Kent State University last week. Well spoken, compassionate bright young man. A young Ted Strickland. And I thought, thank God...we Democrats are going to have an open primary, and the winner will be MUCH STRONGER as a result of the experience. And now I am told that the brain trust who lost EVERY SINGLE STATEWIDE OFFICE in 2010 is back and in charge. Run people. Run. The inmates are running the asylum.

On Sunday, O'Neill, 67, who lives in South Russell in Geauga County, also posted "Yes I said it. Walking dead man."

On Monday, O'Neill added another post:

"Last fall when the Ohio Democratic Party totally collapsed I called for the resignation of every single one of the non-elected members of the Executive Committee. Obviously that did not happen. Today's thought. When was the last time the financial books of ODP were audited. Question: How much money is ODP paying in "consulting fees" to the members of the Executive Committee?Saturday's vote was a million dollar vote. But not for rank and file Democrats."

The Republican Party responded late Monday morning, saying a "respected Democrat rips Strickland endorsement."

The full Republican statement:

The Ohio Republican Party released the following reaction and background information on last night's comments by Ohio Supreme Court Justice Bill O'Neill.

"It's not surprising that Strickland's retread candidacy is facing such strong pushback from fellow Democrats given the awful job he did as governor," said Ohio Republican Party Communications Director Chris Schrimpf. "The Strickland era was terrible for Ohio workers who watched while we trailed 47 other states in job creation and 350,000 jobs disappeared."

"Leave the Ohio Democratic Party immediately. I have just learned that they have made an endorsement in the US Senate race for my dear friend Ted Strickland. When you see Ted, give him a hug and kiss him goodbye. He is a walking dead man. It is now very clear that we learned NOTHING with the devastating losses last year. NOTHING."

"...the brain trust who lost EVERY SINGLE STATEWIDE OFFICE in 2010 is back and in charge. Run people. Run. The inmates are running the asylum."

O'Neill was elected to the Ohio Supreme Court in 2012, for a term beginning January 2013. He served as an appellate judge on the Ohio Eleventh District Court of Appeals for 10 years. Twice, O'Neill was the Democratic nominee for U.S. Representative in Ohio's 14th congressional district against U.S. Rep Steve LaTourette (R) and lost both races.