Rep. Pat Tiberi (R)
Elected: 2000, 5th term.
Born: Oct. 21, 1962, Columbus .
Education: OH St. U., B.A. 1985.
Family: Married (Denice); 4 children.
Elected office: OH House of Reps., 1992-2000, Maj. ldr., 1999-2000.
Professional Career: Staff asst., U.S. Rep. John Kasich, 1984-92; Realtor, ReMax Achievers, 1995-2000.
The congressman from the 12th District is Pat Tiberi, a Republican elected in 2000. The son of Italian immigrants, Tiberi (TEE berry) grew up in Columbus and graduated from the Ohio State University. He worked as a real estate agent and then as an assistant to Republican U.S. Rep. John Kasich for eight years. Kasich helped Tiberi win a seat in the state House, where he became majority leader and supported business-friendly legislation and tort-law changes. In 1999, Kasich, then chairman of the Budget Committee, announced his retirement from the House. Tiberi won support to replace his mentor from most of the Republican establishment and from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. He faced a noisy but not very effective primary challenge from state Sen. Gene Watts, who sought to rally the conservative base. Tiberi won 73%-21%. The resounding victory gave him a big boost heading into the general election against Maryellen O'Shaughnessy, a Democratic City Council member in Columbus. She had a compelling personal story as the single mother of a 10-year-old son. Tiberi played up his Columbus roots and his membership in the Ohio State marching band and held O’Shaughnessy responsible for negative Democratic Party ads that labeled him a defender of insurance companies on the issue of affordable prescription drugs. This was one of the most-watched House races in the nation. With campaign help from Kasich, Tiberi won 53%-44%.
|Pat Tiberi (R)||197,447||(55%)||($1,714,042)|
|David Robinson (D)||152,234||(42%)||($180,974)|
|Steven Linnabary (Lib)||10,707||(3%)|
|Pat Tiberi (R)||63,450||(90%)|
|David Ryon (R)||6,681||(10%)|
Prior Winning Percentages: 2006 (57%), 2004 (62%), 2002 (64%), 2000 (53%)
In the House, Tiberi’s record has been conservative on economic and cultural issues but occasionally centrist on defense and foreign policy. He has called for scrapping the income-tax code and for creating a national commission to craft a new tax system, and he supports lifting the trade embargo on Cuba. On the Financial Services Committee, he has focused on housing and home-ownership issues, including a bill to require an increase in zero-down-payment mortgages for first-time home buyers. In July 2006, he joined a group of Republican mavericks who urged a vote to increase the minimum wage.
When U.S. Rep. Rob Portman of Ohio resigned from the House in 2005, Tiberi was the Ohio delegation’s choice to fill his seat on the Ways and Means Committee. After a bruising intraparty fight, the seat went to Devin Nunes of California. Then in January 2007, Tiberi finally won a Ways and Means seat, with a boost from Republican Leader John Boehner of Ohio. Tiberi had been campaign manager for Boehner in his successful bid for majority leader in early 2006, and he later helped Boehner fix organizational problems at the National Republican Congressional Committee. He typically toes the party line against Democratic proposals on Ways and Means, but he supported their bills to expand the State Children’s Health Insurance Program.
Despite the district’s narrow partisan balance, Tiberi has easily won re-election. In 2006, he faced an unusual challenge from 79-year-old Bob Shamansky, a lawyer and real-estate investor who held the seat for two years before Kasich defeated him in 1982. Shamansky criticized the Iraq War and the congressional failure to allow the government to negotiate with pharmaceutical companies in the Medicare prescription-drug program. He also loaned his campaign $1.4 million. Tiberi distanced himself from President George W. Bush on Iraq, and he won 57%-43%. In 2008, he was challenged by businessman and climate-control advocate David Robinson, a political novice who ran on the need for change in Congress. The result was similar to that in 2006. Tiberi lost 51%-46% in Franklin County, which cast 61% of the vote, but won 55%-42% overall, with 69%-28% in Delaware and 67-31% in Licking. The election of Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy in the neighboring 15th District could give Tiberi protection in redistricting if Democrats are shifted to her district to bolster her job security.