Waterford resident Victor Smith has spent recent months working with The Ohio Project to get the Ohio health care freedom amendment on last November's ballot but in the next few months, he'll be campaigning as a candidate for Ohio's 6th district Congressional seat in the March primary election.
Smith, a Republican, is running along with Republican Incumbent Bill Johnson, of Marietta, Democrat Charlie Wilson, of St. Clairsville and Democrat Cas Adulewicz, of Steubenville.
Smith is a 1965 Warren High School graduate and 1969 graduate of the West Point United States Military Academy in New York. He retired from the military in 1989 and became a registered professional engineer in Ohio, working for several local plants, including DuPont and Union Carbide. He most recently worked as a consulting engineer for Apex Engineering's Marietta office.
Smith said his No. 1 priority is ensuring that the government does not stand in the way of Utica shale drilling.
New horizontal drilling technology is expected to be used in the coming years to tap into Marcellus and Utica shale deposits that are present in Ohio.
"It represents a great boom for our region, our state and our country," he said. "Everything is taken out at 10,000 feet, so this idea that they're going to pollute the groundwater - it doesn't happen."
Family: four children, six grandchildren.
Education: 1965 Warren High School graduate and 1969 graduate of the West Point United States Military Academy in New York.
Work experience: retired from the military in 1989 and became a registered professional engineer in Ohio, working most recently as a consulting engineer for Apex Engineering's Marietta office.
Smith said he's also concerned about the National Defense Authorization Act, which was signed into law at the end of December by President Barack Obama.
"Sections 1021, 1022 and 1023 need to be taken out," he said. "Those sections give the president the right to define what constitutes a terrorist...and that's not a power you give to any president, period."
Smith said he's also concerned about the debt ceiling, saying it should not be raised. Obama asked Congress Thursday to raise it by $1.2 trillion.
"What Congress is doing right now and they're continuing to do is max one credit card and take another credit card to pay it off with," he said. "Congress, by increasing the debt ceiling, has managed to not kick the can down the road - they're saying 'we don't care, we will never, ever fix this.'"
Smith said he has already been campaigning in the 6th district, in which there are 18 counties, including Washington.