Ohio 5: Karen Gillmor Out, Latta In

September 7, 2007 · 12:08 AM EDT

Karen Gillmor (R), widow of Cong. Paul Gillmor (R), has decided to forego a run for her late husband’s seat, according to normally reliable Republican sources. State Rep. Bob Latta (R) is now likely to get in the race.

Latta served in the state senate (1997-2000) and ran for the 5th District back in 1988, but lost to Paul Gillmor in the primary by 27 votes. Latta was running for the open seat vacated by his father, Delbert Latta (R), who served in Congress for three decades beginning in 1958. (Congressman Latta served briefly on the House Judiciary Committee during the Nixon impeachment.)

Bob Latta is term-limited and represents similar territory in the Bowling Green area with state Sen. Randy Gardner (R), who is also mentioned as a potential candidate.

On the Democratic side, Robin Weirauch, who was her party’s nominee against Gillmor in both 2004 and 2006 is expected to run in the special election. Last year, she drew just over 43% of the vote.

The 5th District gave President Bush over 60% in the 2004 election, and, though Democrats Ted Strickland and Sherrod Brown carried the district in 2006, Republicans start with a significant advantage.