By DENISE GRANT
She did it. Mary Harshfield of Findlay, the Democratic candidate for the 83rd District seat in the Ohio House, didn’t raise and didn’t spend any money on her campaign this fall.
On Oct. 25, Harshfield filed a campaign spending report with the Ohio secretary of state that showed all zeros across the board: zip.
Harshfield filed on the deadline for pre-general election campaign spending reports, which show financial activity since June 30.
Harshfield, 72, is a retired French and English high school teacher. She ran unsuccessfully for Findlay City Council in 2015 and 2017, and for the 83rd District seat in the Ohio House in 2016.
Shortly after the Democratic primary this year, Harshfield said she wanted to pull out of the Ohio House race, but there were no other takers in her party. She said the Democratic Party told her it was unwilling to spend money on the race, and Harshfield vowed she wouldn’t, either.
For the Democrats, the prospect of winning the 83rd District seat may be slim, but the strategy of not spending on the race may have allowed the party to fight battles in more closely-contested races elsewhere in the state.
Her election opponent, Republican Jon Cross, 39, of Kenton, kept fundraising and, without any real pressure in the race, was able to share both his funds and his influence to help other Republican candidates.
Cross is president, chief executive officer and economic development director of the Hardin County Chamber and Business Alliance, Kenton.
The 83rd House District includes Hancock and Hardin counties, and part of Logan County.
Like Cross, state Sen. Robert McColley also made several donations to the Republican Party from his campaign funds.
McColley is running for the District 1 seat in the Ohio Senate. He is being challenged by a political newcomer, Democrat Adam Papin, 38, of Bryan.
Papin was able to raise and spend very little on the race.
The Friends of Cross campaign filed its spending report on Oct. 25, listing $81,812 in donations and $78,942 in expenditures. The campaign carried forward only $2,391 from the primary campaign, which was highly contested.
The campaign ended the latest reporting period with $5,261 on hand.
Cross’ largest expenditure, $30,000, was a donation to the Ohio Republican Party on Oct. 16.
Cross also donated $1,150 to the Hancock County Republican Party, Findlay; and $1,000 to the Tim Striker for Commissioner campaign, Kenton.
Donations of $500 were made to the following campaigns: Tim Barnhorst for Ohio, Columbus; Friends of Jay Edwards, Albany; Ohioans for Rasor, Stow; Friends of Susan Manchester Committee, Lakeview; and Harris for Ohio, Columbus.
Donations of $250 were made to the Hardin County Republican Party, Belle Center; Republicans to Elect Jenna Powell, Laura; Elect Devitis Committee, Columbus; and Friends of Jonathan Dever, Madeira.
Cross’ other major expenditures included paying $4,795 to Golden Graphics, Kenton, for printing, and $3,000 to JPL & Associates, Columbus, political consultants.
A total of $2,123 was paid to Legends Steakhouse, Findlay, for campaign events; and $2,021 was paid to the U.S. Postal Service for postage.
Basil Italian Restaurant, Kenton, was paid $2,129 for campaign fundraisers; and $1,765 was paid to the Hardin County Fair for advertising.
Lucindaco Ltd. of Kenton was paid $1,200 for office rent; and $1,044 was paid to Verizon for cellphone and internet.
One of Cross’ top donors was the campaign of state Rep. Larry Householder, Glenford, which gave $12,707 to the Cross campaign.
Other top donors included Political Education Patterns, Cleveland, which made a $13,400 donation.
Tom Roof, of Kenton, and Ohio Credit Union Legislative Action Committee, Columbus, made $5,000 donations.
Frederick Hitchcock, of Las Vegas, Nevada, made a $4,000 donation.
Donations of $2,500 were made by the Indiana/Kentucky/Ohio Regional Council Of Carpenters PAC, Columbus; Sheryl Haushalter and Todd Sopher, both of Findlay.
Donations of $1,000 each were made by: One Energy Ohio PAC; Sharon Cole and Jerry Cole, of Findlay; United Health Group PAC, Washington, D.C.; Ohio Nurses Association, Columbus; Rex Allen, Chattanooga, Tennessee; Robert Cross, Lantana, Texas; Ted Gatto, East Hanover, New Jersey; Nikki Haushalter, Judd Rarey, Lance Shepherd, all of Kenton; Michael Hayde, Irvine, California; Charles Quaglieri, Reno, Nevada.
Republican state Sen. Robert McColley, who is being challenged in his bid for election to the 1st District seat in the Ohio Senate, reported raising $111,745 during the pre-general election reporting period which began June 30 and ended Oct. 25.
McColley, R-Napoleon, is being challenged by a political newcomer, Democrat Adam Papin.
The 1st Senate District includes all of Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Putnam, Williams, Defiance, Paulding, and Van Wert counties; the southeastern corner of Fulton County; and northern sections of Auglaize and Logan counties.
McColley, 34, previously a state representative, was appointed to the Senate seat in November 2017 after it was vacated by former Sen. Cliff Hite, R-Findlay. Hite quit after admitting “inappropriate behavior” with a state employee.
Papin was unopposed in the Democratic primary election. He works as a furniture fabricator at Sauder Manufacturing, Stryker.
McColley’s fundraising and spending in the race dwarfed Papin’s finances.
“Citizens for McColley” reported a $37,705 carryover from the previous reporting period. McColley listed $77,718 in expenditures, leaving a balance of $71,731.
“Papin for Ohio” reported a total of $5,990 in contributions and $4,075 in spending, with a remaining balance of $1,914. Papin also reported $204 worth of in-kind services, listed as campaign material he paid for himself.
McColley made a $60,000 donation to the Republican State Central Committee, of which $12,440 was returned to the campaign by the committee via in-kind services. Digital advertising made up most of the committee’s in-kind contribution, with the amount listed as $10,733.
The Ohio Republican Party contributed $33,236 to McColley’s campaign via in-kind services described as “mailers and voter contact.”
McColley made several donations to the campaigns of Republican candidates and organizations, including: $500 each to “Larose for Ohio,” Columbus, and “Sprague for Ohio,” Columbus. He contributed $250 each to the Paulding County Republicans and the “Committee to Re-Elect Brian Davis, Bryan.”
The campaign also donated $150 to the Hardin County Republican Party and $100 to the Henry County Republican Party.
Other major expenses reported by the McColley camp included: $8,587 paid to Sweetwater Chophouse, Defiance, for a golf outing fundraiser; and $1,456 to DiscountMugs, Miami, Florida, for can cozies.
Major donations to McColley’s campaign included: $7,500 from Ohio Acre, Columbus; and $6,500 from Marathon Petroleum Corp. Employees PAC, Findlay.
Donations of $5,000 each were made by Kenneth Vaupel, Findlay; and Realtors PAC, Columbus.
Donations of $4,000 each were made by Beer & Wine PAC, and Nisource Inc. PAC, both of Columbus.
Making $2,500 donations were the United Health Group PAC, Washington, D.C.; Brent Gerken, Napoleon; Ed Kidston, Pioneer; Checksmart Financial LLC PAC, Dublin; and Charter Communications Ohio PAC, Columbus.
Making $2,000 donations were Anthem PAC, Washington, D.C.; Gary Cooper of Oakwood; and Thomas Reineke, Findlay.
A donation of $1,700 was made by the Ohio Nurses Association, Columbus.
A donation of $1,500 was made by the American Electric Power Co. Ohio, Committee For Responsible Government, Columbus.
A donation of $1,250 was made by Osana Nurse Anesthetists PAC, Columbus.
McColley’s campaign received donations of $1,000 each from the following groups: IGS OH PAC and Dealers Investment Group, both of Dublin; AT&T Inc. Ohio Employee PAC, Brecksville; Mannik & Smith Group Inc. PAC, Maumee; Friends of Ohio Hospitals, Ohio Farm Bureau Federation AggPAC, Ohio Law PAC and Ohio CPA PAC, all of Columbus; Duke Energy Corp. PAC, Charlotte, North Carolina; One Energy Ohio PAC, Findlay; Abbott Laboratories Employee PAC, Abbott Park, Illinois; Microsoft Corp. PAC, Redmond, Washington; The Leadership Fund, Toledo Area Chamber, Toledo; PAC Equine Racing, Grove City.
Individuals who each made $1,000 donations to the campaign included: James Cooper, Oakwood; Duane Jebbett, Findlay; Bryan Keller, Defiance; Terry Rummel, Bryan; and Joseph Schetz, Northwood.
The two largest donors to “Papin for Ohio” were the Ohio State UAW PAC, Maumee, and Kathryn Papin, who each donated $1,000.
Papin’s largest expense was $1,377 paid to pcsigns.com, Cincinnati, for yard signs.