February 23rd, 2010
02:16 PM ET
12 years ago

Traficant will launch independent congressional bid

(CNN) - Former Democratic Rep. James Traficant, who in September was released from a federal prison after serving seven years on a bribery and racketeering conviction, told CNN Tuesday he will launch an independent bid to return to Congress.

"I will be running for congress…as an independent," Traficant told CNN's Kyra Philips. "I have been a Democrat all my life, and quite frankly I am disgusted with both parties. I hate to say this. My father is rolling over in his grave, a truck driver."

The former eight-term congressman, who represented Youngstown and its surrounding suburbs, did not indicate which district he would run in, but Ohio television station WFMJ reports Traficant is eyeing a campaign in either the state's 6th or 17th congressional districts.

The 17th district, the seat Traficant formally held, is currently represented by Rep. Tim Ryan - a 36-year old former aide to Traficant who is considered to be a rising star in the Democratic Party. Ohio's 6th congressional district, which encompasses Ohio's southeastern boarder with West Virginia, is currently represented by two-term Democrat Charlie Wilson. The seat was formally held by Ted Strickland, the current governor of Ohio.

"I see the Democrats are completely controlled by foreign interests and big lobbying money. The republicans are too, but the democrats more so. I hypocritically cannot accept that," Traficant also told CNN.

Traficant has until early May to file as an Independent in either district.

Filed under: 2010 • James Traficant • Ohio • Popular Posts
soundoff (231 Responses)
  1. NVa Native

    So who cares what this goof-ball is doing or what his opinions are? Going to jail for things he did as a Congressman are way worse than anything the Dems or the Repubs are doing – what a hypocrite.

    February 23, 2010 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  2. REALworld28

    Here we go again,James Traficant now who going to back him? I know TEA PARTY, i wish my brothers could get out prison and get a job.

    February 23, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  3. JW in Missouri

    One wonders how Traficant's father reacted to his son's indictment and imprisonment.

    February 23, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  4. Burke

    Go Jim Go!

    February 23, 2010 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  5. Dennis

    I thought that under Federal law, you were ineligible to hold elected office, vote, or own a firearm, if you have ever been convicted of a crime punishable by 1 year or more of prison.

    February 23, 2010 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  6. Jim in Auburn

    A person that was convicted of bribery and racketeering should be permanently banned from holding public office.

    February 23, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  7. fishy fish

    Does this guy know what his name means in french? haha!

    February 23, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  8. Dean

    He could to move to Chicago and get elected tomorrow.

    February 23, 2010 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  9. Tim

    Me thinks his father is rolling over in his grave for another reason. Or maybe the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

    February 23, 2010 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  10. sam

    Why would it be surprising that an ex-con would run for political office? Let's face it, they are all crooks anyway, most just haven't been caught with their pants down or hand in the tills of the special interest or the "corporate aristocracy" that runs this nation, to the point of such carelessness as this one and others yet.

    God -blast -"The united Corporation's of America" [the UCA} For which it stands. One sickness, under greed, With liberty and justice for them and all the wealthy who rally behind them with the vocal banner ""give us profits or give us bale-outs!! and let us do whatever is good for our bottom line."" As in the The movie Titanic, they stand posed at the front of the ship, hands outstretched, head thrown back with a big smile and shout at the top of their lungs – I'M KING OF THE WORLD!!!

    Now it just a matter of time till the great vessel that was, sinks to it's early grave with all those who put their faith in men, campaign promises, [commonly known as – lies] and a stance of self interest for them to win enough time to insure themselves of an easy income upon retiring or of loosing there government positions, and not the constitution. There will be survivors, i wonder if it will be more than on the titanic itself percentage wise??

    In any-case, the monetary privileges as well as the massive side benefits for public officials that we the people should be solely voting into office, HAS TO GO!!

    Short term positions with "full disclosure" and "totally" transparent open door policy has to take the current and past "BAU" way of doing things. If they are not doing not only the work for their individual states concerns, with an open and concerned look and mind for the good of all America first, then they should be booted out and replaced – not when there term is up, but as soon as these things come to light.

    Once proven incompetent, no one should stay in a place of power no matter who they are.

    February 23, 2010 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  11. Kraig Rasool

    Trafficants comment on running for Congress really just makes me
    think WOW! You can be tried convicted and sent to jail for a period
    of time, and still come out in society and start a campaign to re-trace
    your steps of the days when you were hailed by your colleagues none
    of them knowing at that time you were a add milk and stir criminal.
    America home of the brave has never meant so much. I wonder sometimes people who are in public offices that represent the masses are they really conscious to is really going on around them...
    Sure his father is turning in his grave many times over, not from him
    not being in office but because of the offspring he produced traveling
    the path of crime.

    February 23, 2010 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  12. marlene

    Mr. Traficant isn't "famous", just an ex-con. For CNN to promote him to this status is an outrage!

    February 23, 2010 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  13. G. Howard

    James' only problem is that he got caught. He will fit in well with the rest of the crooks in congress.

    February 23, 2010 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  14. givemegrat

    He should fit right in with the other crooks it will only show how low the american people will go if he reelected

    February 23, 2010 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  15. Insulting Politics

    What an insult to the America politics ! A convicted felon is running for Congress?! He would be making the laws?!

    February 23, 2010 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  16. alpha_nu_916

    "I see the Democrats are completely controlled by foreign interests and big lobbying money. The republicans are too, but the democrats more so. I hypocritically cannot accept that."
    Truficant then added, "But I will anyways because I as dirty as a pig in plop! If I'm elected, my votes definitely for sale."

    February 23, 2010 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  17. Mac

    Lets vote him in! He can join all the other crooks in Washington.


    February 23, 2010 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  18. Jolene

    Bribery and racketeering ,,, and now an attempt to get back at the trough for more, wearing an Independent mask.

    February 23, 2010 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  19. Conservative Voice

    I'm disgusted with anyone who was just released from prison thinking anyone would vote for him....

    February 23, 2010 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  20. Mr. Moderation

    He should run for Congress and maybe he can work on straigtening out the mess this country is in.

    February 23, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  21. Dave

    It's a shame he was able to get a hold of so much crack while he was in prison.

    February 23, 2010 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  22. stay away from politics

    A corrupt democrat that actually made it to prison. Nice.

    Now all we need to do is toss Chris Dodd, Charlie Rangle, Nancy Pelosi, Barney Frank, Timmy Gietner, Burris and all the other tax cheats, bribers and corrupt polititians into prison.

    February 23, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  23. brian

    well, being a known and convicted criminal, he'll fit right in with the other crooks & incompetents in Congress

    February 23, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  24. Olaf Big

    A crook in his own words: "I hypocritically cannot accept that," What is there left to say?

    February 23, 2010 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  25. Steve

    " I hypocritically cannot accept that," What a great quote.

    February 23, 2010 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
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