After 2 appointed to bench, Republican judicial primary appears moot

Robert G. Hanseman, left, and Kimberly A. Melnick, will assume seats on the Montgomery County Common Pleas Court April 11 following their appointments by Gov. Mike DeWine. CONTRIBUTED

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Robert G. Hanseman, left, and Kimberly A. Melnick, will assume seats on the Montgomery County Common Pleas Court April 11 following their appointments by Gov. Mike DeWine. CONTRIBUTED

Moves affect May 3 primary, but it’s too late to remove names from ballot.

Three Republican candidates’ names appear on the May 3 primary ballot for a Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge seat, but it appears that race is now moot.

Robert Hanseman, Kimberly Melnick and Michele Henne were the Republican contenders for the vacant seat once held by retired Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge Gregory Singer. However, last month Gov. Mike DeWine appointed Hanseman to that vacant seat for now, and also appointed Melnick to a different Common Pleas seat formerly held by Judge Michael Krumholtz, who also retired.

Montgomery County Board of Elections Director Jeff Rezabek said Melnick has formally withdrawn her name from contention for Singer’s old seat.

And after Hanseman was appointed, Henne told the Dayton Daily News this week that she now will not run for the seat, either.

“I’m going to submit my withdrawal of candidacy to the Montgomery County Board of Elections,” Henne said.

However, Rezabek said the women’s names will still be on the ballot, regardless, because the withdrawals came after the deadline to remove them.

“So although Kim withdrew, her name does appear on the ballot,” Rezabek said. “We are putting notices at the polling locations, at the early vote center, we got a notice down there right now that Kim Melnick has withdrawn and if you do vote for her, it won’t count.”

He said the same rules would apply for Henne if and when her withdrawal is finalized.

Hanseman and Melnick will both have to run in November’s general election to maintain their newly appointed seats.

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While there will not be a contested Republican primary for the judge seat, the Democrats have three people running against each other in that May primary. Jacqueline Gaines, Angelina Jackson and Tony Schoen are running, and the winner will face Hanseman in November.

Rezabek said due to the timing of Krumholtz’s retirement, there will not be a primary to decide who will run for his seat in November. However, Democrats can pick a candidate to face Melnick in the November general election.

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