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Wenstrup takes GOP policy committee seat

Brad Wenstrup, the newly-elected congressman from Ohio's 2nd Congressional District, has volunteered to join the House Republican Policy Committee, a group which helps set the legislative agenda for House Republicans.

Wenstrup - a 54-year-old podiatrist and Iraq war veteran from Columbia Tusculum - takes office in January, after pulling an upset victory over Rep. Jean Schmidt in the March GOP primary and easily defeating a little-known and seldom-seen Democrat, William R. Smith of Pike County, in the November election. Wenstrup won with 59 percent of the vote.

Wenstrup's only previous run for public office was in 2009, when he ran for Cincinnati mayor against Democratic incumbent Mark Mallory and took 45 percent of the vote.

The 2nd Congressional District includes much of central and eastern Hamilton County, all of Clermont, Brown, Adams, Highland and Pike Counties; and parts of Ross and Scioto counties.

Howard Wilkinson is in his 50th year of covering politics on the local, state and national levels.