Republican Steve Stivers came to Marysville July 7 to announce he will make another run for the 15th District congressional seat.

Republican Steve Stivers came to Marysville July 7 to announce he will make another run for the 15th District congressional seat.

Standing in front of the Union County Courthouse steps, Stivers said he will challenge incumbent Mary Jo Kilroy, a Democrat. She narrowly defeated him in 2008.

The 15th District is made up of Union and Madison counties as well as portions of Columbus and its western suburbs.

The former state senator said he is making another run because he thinks Washington is off track.

Stivers said the national economic troubles began when people spent money they did not have and borrowed money they could not pay back.

"There are people in Washington who believe the solution to this problem, and people in Congress who believe the solution to our economy's problems, is to spend money we don't have and borrow money the government can't pay back," he said. "We've got to stop the madness."

Stivers said the national debt has increased by almost a trillion dollars in the first six months of the yea and that in the first 50 days of the year, Congress spent more than $1-million a minute. He also said $700-billion in stimulus funds was too expensive, that the 2009 budget is $1.9-trillion in the red and that the government now owns a car company.

"America is at a crossroads right now and we need somebody who will represent us in Washington in this district," he said. "Somebody who will go there to change Washington, somebody who will work with Republicans and Democrats to get things done, somebody who will try to make America more competitive internationally, not less."

Stivers was joined by his wife, Karen, who is expecting a child in December.

"Unfortunately, when our baby is born, our baby will already owe almost $35,000 as her share of the national debt," he said.

That national debt is expected to double in the next five years, Stivers said.

"We can't afford that and our kids can't afford that," he said. "We need to pay down our national debt and we can do that through real economic growth and make America more competitive against other countries."

Stivers didn't hesitate to take the first verbal jab at Kilroy and her supporters, who he said spent millions of dollars to attack him personally during the 2008 campaign.

"I expect that to continue in this race," he said. "Once you have been in the combat zone, where you have the possibility of real bullets flying at you, I'm not scared of TV ads."

Stivers was called to active duty in 2004 while a member of the Ohio Senate. He has served in the Ohio National Guard since 1985, doing tours of duty in Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar and Djibouti.

Among those on hand for Stivers' announcement were State Rep. Dave Burke (R-Marysville), Union County Commissioner Tom McCarthy and a group of Union County officeholders and county employees.

The only reaction from the Kilroy camp came from spokesman Paul Tencher, who said he hoped county employees were using comp time while attending the 30-minute announcement.