Ex-Con Ex-Rep Traficant Mulling A Run For Office

Former Ohio Rep. Jim Traficant, who was recently released from prison following a seven-year sentence on corruption charges, announced today that he is circulating nomination petitions in three Ohio districts for the U.S. House.

Traficant, who was a Democrat when he was expelled from the House in 2002, will make a decision on whether to run — and in what district, and under which party affiliation — based on the response he receives. He plans to decide next month, the Youngstown Vindicator reports.

He did not say which districts he is considering. But his advisers have said in the past that they were looking at the 17th and 6th districts, which are both currently represented by Democrats.Traficant was convicted in 2002 of 10 felony charges including racketeering, bribery, obstruction of justice and tax evasion, after he demanded kickbacks from his staff and failed to pay taxes, among other things. He was sentenced to eight years in prison and ousted from the House in a vote of 420 to one.

Since his release, he’s remained unapologetic, vowing to kick the IRS “in the crotch real good” and claiming the House cheated in order to expel him.

Traficant has taken on some eccentric pet causes, and attempted to raise money by auctioning some of the paintings he made in prison.