Lots of rumor going around about candidates for county executive, and county council. ?Being that I’ve pulled petitions for both, I’ve got my ear to the ground pretty closely. ?And the one name that keeps popping up for county executive is my own councilman in Cleveland Ward 3, Joe Cimperman. ?In fact, word is that Cimperman has taken himself off of time-intensive committees in Cleveland City Council in preparation for his county executive run.

Pencil him in. ?Cimperman will probably have a rough time. ?There is a lot of resentment within the Democratic Party about his 2008 primary against Dennis Kucinich. ?A lot. ?Runs deep. ?And wide. ?Think labor. ?He’ll probably raise a ton of money from the landed gentry downtown, but if you kick Dennis the way Cimperman kicked him in 2008, people remember. ?There’s no political machine left on the west side that isn’t also deeply entwined with Dennis’ machine. ?And there’s not really a natural constituency for Cimperman on the east side.

Cimperman’s presence in the race probably makes Lakewood Mayor Ed Fitzgerald nervous, but in a county executive campaign likely to feature a balkanized landscape of varying cliques of voters, Lakewood is bigger than Ward 3. ?Cimperman doesn’t have much name recognition beyond the Cleveland city limits, despite his primary campaign in 2008. ?Georgine Welo will collect a handful of votes from the east side. ?Chris Ronayne is literally unknown to the electorate.