Several Candidates Fail to Qualify for Cincinnati Mayor Primary

Just six candidates remain in the race to become the next mayor of Cincinnati, pending Hamilton County Board of Elections’ continued review.

click to enlarge Cincinnati City Hall - Photo: Nick Swartsell
Photo: Nick Swartsell
Cincinnati City Hall

And then there were six.

Just six candidates remain in the race to become the next mayor of Cincinnati, pending Hamilton County Board of Elections’ continued review.

This week, Adam Paul Teague Koehler and Kelli Prather failed to qualify because they did not obtain the required 500 valid signatures supporting their candidacy, the BOE found.

Candidates submitted their signatures and paperwork by 4 p.m. Feb. 18, the filing deadline to be considered for the primary.

Startup founder Koehler had 456 valid signatures, while occupational therapist Prather submitted 444 valid signatures, the BOE found. In a Feb. 24 tweet, Prather said she would be contesting the decision.

Earlier this week, the BOE found that Cincinnati City Council member Wendell Young also did not submit the required number of valid signatures.

Hamilton County Board of Elections will certify the petitions on March 2. All candidates are unofficial until then.

Those remaining on Hamilton County’s candidate list include Cincinnati City Council member David Mann, startup founder Gavi Begtrup, educator Herman J. Najoli, retired Cincinnati firefighter Raffel Prophett, Hamilton County clerk of courts Aftab Pureval, and State Sen. Cecil Thomas.

All are Democrats except for Najoli, who is an Independent.

Just before the Feb. 18 filing deadline, federally indicted former Cincinnati City Council member P.G. Sittenfeld and current council member Chris Seelbach withdrew from the race. Current vice mayor Chris Smitherman also declared that he would not enter the race to become mayor, as reported by WLWT-TV.

Current mayor John Cranley has served since 2013 and is term limited.

The Cincinnati mayoral election is scheduled for Nov. 2. It will be between the top two vote-getters from the May 4 primary. Find election information on the Hamilton County website.

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