Clooney for Congress

Nick Clooney. (Photo: Jason D. Geil)

By Daisy Carrington, Contributor
February / March 2004

Nick Clooney doesn’t fit the stereotypes typically applied to politicians. He recently announced that he will run as a Democrat in what promises to be a heated Congressional campaign in Northern Kentucky. He certainly hasn’t lived a boring life. And for a weekly columnist, former game show host and radio personality, father to one cultural icon (have you met George?) and brother to another — the late singer and White Christmas star Rosemary Clooney, Nick is rather humble.

In his hometown of Augusta, Clooney is known by neighbors and locals for his friendliness and, more notably, his sincerity. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen him without a smile on his face,” said neighbor and local attorney, Louise Brown. “A lot of people in his position as a celebrity would be very reclusive. But Nick is very involved in our community.”

Though there are those (mainly out-of-towners who have never met Clooney) who might be deterred by the dubious mixture of politics and showbiz, the fact remains that between his 15-year stint as a columnist for the Cincinnati Post and his experience as a TV news anchor, Clooney is hardly a political novice. “Because of my years in radio, television and print journalism, many in the district know me and know where I stand on the issues that touch us all,” Clooney said, adding that “those who do not yet know me, will soon.”

Ken Lucas, the Democratic Congressman who is vacating his seat, has given the hopeful his full support and endorsed him. Lucas extolled Clooney as “a fresh face on the political scene who is intelligent, articulate, highly respected, and above all, passionate about standing up for his beliefs and the people of his district.”

Clooney runs with the full support of his friends and family. When questioned about his father’s candidacy, son George stated that, “There isn’t a person who has dedicated more of his life and career to the citizens of Kentucky and I couldn’t be more proud of him.”

Nick can often be spotted walking his dog along the banks of the Ohio River with his wife, former Ohio beauty queen and City Councilwoman, Nina, and talking to friends and strangers alike. On his encounters, he is open and encourages debate. “I think people ought to ask me specific questions and then make their own decisions about what kind of Democrat I am,” he said. ♦

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