Republican judicial candidates visit county

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From left to right, Noah Powers, Mary Lynne Birck, Bill Coley and Matthew Byrne.

From left to right, Noah Powers, Mary Lynne Birck, Bill Coley and Matthew Byrne.

Courtesy photo

The 12th District Judicial Republican candidates or their representative recently presented to the Fayette County Republican Central Committee and guests at the Center for Economic Opportunity.

A synopsis of their backgrounds and qualifications, along with Facebook and websites, are listed for each candidate in alphabetical order.

– Mary Lynne Birck: An attorney in the Clermont County Prosecutor’s Office for 25 years, Birck has represented clients in hundreds of matters in both federal and state courts as well as administrative agencies. Her campaign slogan: Integrity, Impartiality and Independence.

Importantly, Birck has demonstrated competence in the Twelfth District Court of Appeals, having represented clients in 19 cases. Her most recent case in the Twelfth District was successfully representing the Clermont County Board of Elections in December 2019. None of her opponents have had an appeal decided by the Twelfth District since 2008.

She has enjoyed success in probate, domestic relations, common pleas courts in a wide variety of cases (i.e. contracts, personal injury, construction, employment, workers comp, mental illness, abuse/neglect/exploitation of elderly, children and the developmentally disabled) — matters which the appellate courts decide.

Birck is endorsed by the Clermont County Republican Party and many individuals from those clients, former clients, attorneys (co-counsel and opposing counsel) who know her work firsthand.

Few cases are heard by the Supreme Court of Ohio; therefore, the appellate court is tremendously important — “the last stop” for most cases.

She holds a license to carry concealed in Ohio.

Birck is a proud graduate of St Ursula Academy, Cincinnati, Ohio (1984) where she returned to teach religion; the College of the University of Chicago (1988, with honors); the University of Cincinnati, College of Law (1994, full scholarship).

A life-long resident of the district, she and her husband of 25 years, John, and four rescue dogs live on 26 wooded acres in New Richmond.

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Matthew Byrne practices law in Ohio and Kentucky. Byrne was a White House staffer during President George W. Bush’s first term. He argued that just as President Trump chooses federal judicial nominees based on (1) demonstrated legal excellence and (2) a demonstrated commitment to conservative judicial philosophy, Republican voters should apply the same criteria when choosing state court judges. Byrne argued that he uniquely meets both of these criteria.

First, Byrne practices law at a national law firm. He has extensive experience representing small and large businesses in local, state, and federal trial and appeals courts. He has been repeatedly named to Super Lawyers magazine’s “Ohio Rising Stars” list.

Second, Byrne has been involved in the Federalist Society, the national conservative legal organization, for his entire career, and he was the organization’s Cincinnati Lawyers Chapter president for five years. This demonstrates his commitment to conservative judicial philosophy: constitutional originalism and textualism (also known as strict constructionism). Byrne is the only candidate in the race who has a history of involvement, let alone leadership, in the Federalist Society.

Byrne said that “The role of a judge is to say what the law already is, not to create new law. A judge’s role is to apply the original meaning of the words of the law as written—not to apply the judge’s own personal preferences.”

Byrne is endorsed by the Warren and Madison County Republican Parties, Cincinnati Right to Life PAC, Congressman Steve Chabot, the Warren County prosecutor and sheriff, and other conservative leaders. He is recommended by the Right to Life Action Coalition of Ohio (they do not endorse).

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William Coley II is currently State Senator from Butler County. His legislative voting record for the past 16 years shows that he shares the values of our community. His leadership and his 100% voting record on Second Amendment issues has resulted in his endorsement by Buckeye Firearms. His 100% lifetime voting record with Ohio Right to Life has resulted in him being recommended by them (they do not endorse). Senator Coley is the only candidate supported by both of these leading values organizations.

It’s been said that one of the things that Senator Coley is best known for is that he listens, “not just to those he agrees with, but to those he disagrees with. He challenges those around him to prove their way is right. When presented with solid evidence, he will change his stance to reflect the new knowledge.”

It has also been said that, “He understands that his opinion of what the law should be does not matter. He will rule on the law as written. No matter what party or political ideas you associate with, that is the kind of person you should want as judge.”

Senator Coley has 34 years of experience as a commercial litigation attorney, is AV Preeminent rated (the highest rating), and is licensed to practice law in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana.

An active member of his community, Senator Coley is involved with St. John’s Catholic Church, Sleep in Heavenly Peace, Sons of the American Legion and the Boy Scouts of America. He and his wife Carolyn live with their two Old English Sheep dogs (Wilby and Elwood) plus a cat (Tillie).

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Noah Powers has been the presiding judge on the Butler County Common Pleas Court for 13 years. His theme is experience matters. The District Court of Appeals is the second highest judicial position in the state, just below the Oho Supreme Court. He has tried some of Butler County’s most serious civil and criminal cases. He learned to follow the process, listen patiently to all sides, to ask questions, do his homework and then make a well-considered and well-deliberated decision. He feels that is an important and transferable skill for an appellate judge.

He feels that his record reflects judicial restraint and the proper exercise of judicial discretion, applying the law as it is written, not legislating the law. He observes a conservative approach to the Constitution, assigning the meaning intended by the founders. He rejects speculation about what the founders meant or subjective intent. He will protect gun rights and unborn rights.

He was in general practice for 26 years. He has significant experience in domestic relations, probate, juvenile, contract, labor, and personal injury practice, all practices relevant to the Court of Appeals. He also served in the Butler County Prosecutors office and later in criminal defense on cases from simple drug possession to serious homicide cases.

Appellate judges must evaluate the decisions of trial judges. He is the only candidate with this breadth of experience. He has been unanimously elected by 12 conservative judges to be the presiding judge of the Butler County Common Pleas Courts. He has the Butler County Republican endorsement, along with other law enforcement individuals and organizations, such as several FOPs.

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Mark Pitstick introduced himself as a candidate in the 3A precinct election. All other central committee positions are unopposed.

From left to right, Noah Powers, Mary Lynne Birck, Bill Coley and Matthew Byrne. left to right, Noah Powers, Mary Lynne Birck, Bill Coley and Matthew Byrne. Courtesy photo

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