Zanesville Residents React to Ney Decision

Bob Ney may have been forced out of his re-election campaign by Republican leaders. But during his six terms in Congress, Democrats in the 18th district have praised his knack for bringing home federal dollars. Zanesville’s mayor says Ney has obtained millions for his city’s infrastructure. Howard Zwelling says it’s an ability honed by his years in office.

“He has been there long enough to establish himself in a position where he knows how to pull the right strings and get things done for his constituents,” Zwelling says. “Though he and I are not of the same political ilk Bob Ney has been very good for the Zanesville, Muskingum County area.”

But several diners in a lunch-time crowd at Tee Jays, a Zanesville restaurant, say they think longevity in office may be a large part of the problem.

“Very nice guy. Very enjoyable. Fun being around him.”

Diner Bill Phillips.

“I’m just afraid he’s been there, like so many of them, too long, and perhaps got in trouble.”

Phillips says he always believed Ney was an ethical politician – a quality more important, he says, than bringing in federal funds. Across the table Jim Federick says ethics among Congressional Republicans and Democrats is in short supply.

“I think they’re both equally at fault,” Federick says. “But I think they get complacent after they’ve been there for a while. And the work they do for their area, they say, Well, I’ve got it made.’”

Federick says he thinks Ney’s political demise should serve as a lesson to others who hold public office.

“I think that most of these politicians have got to wake up and hold themselves to a higher standard than what they are doing.”

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