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Mary Jo Kilroy to challenge Rep. Pryce

County Commissioner Mary Jo Kilroy will be the first strong opponent running against Representative Deborah Pryce since she won the Congressional seat in 1992. Kilroy says she believes the country is headed in the wrong direction and that a message of change needs to be sent to Congress.

Things in our community, the economy, the job loss, what happened with Katrina, the poverty in this country, war, ethics, the environment. So many issues that drive me to run for Congress and win this seat so that the people of the 15th district can have a representative more in tune with their values and their priorities.

Kilroy says her priorities will be much different from her opponent's. Pryce ranks fourth in GOP Congressional leadership. Kilroy is already linking Pryce's high ranking to President Bush, the war in Iraq and indicted former House GOP Leader Tom DeLay.

Ohio Republican political director, Jason Mauk, says that part of Kilroy's campaign strategy is mere finger pointing and says his party is certain Pryce will keep her seat in the U.S. House.

We're confident in the re-election of all of our incumbents, not because of their districts but because they work hard for their constituents. Representative Pryce is no exception. She has earned national respect for her leadership and bipartisan cooperation on Capital Hill. She has an outstanding record of accomplishment for the people in her district.

Kilroy says Pryce is part of the Congressional decision making that is hurting the American people. She says she believes voters are tired of the corruption in Washington and are ready for new leadership.

She needs to take responsibility for her actions as part of that leadership. She votes over 90 percent of the time the same way that Tom DeLay does. I don't believe that's in step with the people of the 15th district, people of central Ohio. I think they would reject that.

Some of the issues Kilroy says she will concentrate on if she wins the seat are funding for higher education and making sure there's a federal budget that reflects the country's priorities. Fifty-six-year-old Kilroy served on the Columbus school board for eight years before winning two consecutive terms as a county commissioner.