By Gregory Korte
The Cincinnati Enquirer
State Sen. Mark Mallory, who has been exploring a run for Cincinnati mayor for seven months, is expected to announce Tuesday that he'll run against Mayor Charlie Luken - a fellow Democrat - in 2005.
Mallory refused to answer questions about the announcement Sunday, but said he would make "a major announcement about his political future and the future of the City of Cincinnati" at a news conference with political supporters in Columbia Tusculum.
"He's been thinking about this for a while," said Patrick McLean, a political adviser from Columbus who worked with Mallory as chief of staff of the Democratic Caucus in the Ohio Senate. "It would be premature to say anything now, just because there are still a lot of supporters he needs to call."
Mallory, who will be term-limited out of the Ohio Senate in 2007, hired a pollster in January to explore the depth of his support for a citywide run. He is also co-chairman of the Hamilton County Democratic Party.
Luken, elected in 2001 in the city's first direct election for mayor since 1925, is also a Democrat and has indicated to council Democrats and party leaders that he plans to run for a final four-year term. Mallory would be the first challenger to announce, but several other candidates have not denied an interest in the job: Democratic Vice Mayor Alicia Reece, Democratic Councilman David Pepper, and Ohio First District Court of Appeals Judge Mark Painter, a Republican.
Mallory's announcement Tuesday is on the opposite side of town as his 9th Senate district, and Mallory - who has never run citywide - would have to reach out to east side voters to get elected.
But in the African-American community the Mallory name is one of the most formidable on the ballot. His father, William L. Mallory Sr., is a former Ohio House Majority Leader. Brother William Mallory Jr., is a Hamilton County Municipal Court judge, and brother Dale Mallory is president of the West End Community Council.
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