WARREN, Ohio (WYTV) – Trumbull County commissioner candidates are talking Tuesday about a lawsuit filed Monday by the incumbent and outgoing commissioner Dan Polivka.
Polivka lost his commissioner’s seat to Republican Niki Frenchko.
The results of the election could lie in the balance of justice, at least that is what Polivka is pushing for with the lawsuit.
In the court filing, Polivka and 66 voters in the county have asked the court to find the results of the election, which Frencko won with more than 52% of the vote, to be held “null in void.” Polivka claims Frencko lives in Mentor, not Trumbull County.
“I think it has a lot of potential to come out in our favor,” Polivka said. “I think they have residency laws. They have ward races, commissioner races to live in that county. You can’t have your cake and eat it, too.”
Frenchko says the issue has already been brought to the Board of Elections and decided. She worries the lawsuit could cost the taxpayers money since she believes it would require a visiting judge to hear the case and a special prosecutor.
“My place on the ballot as an elector of Trumbull County was already legitimized by the Board of Elections and still is,” she said. “Over 49,000 people voted for me in this election and to overturn that is simply unfair. It’s like a tantrum. Take your lumps like a man.”
Polivka says he wants the court to clarify its position on this issue. He has asked the court to declare him the winner of the race or hold a new election.
“Not only for me but for future races to come. We need to have a decision by the courts stating that if you live two counties away, you can’t run in the county you claim to have a voting residence in,” Polivka said.