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Ohio Justice To Fellow Democrats: 'Run People. Run.'

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Ohio Supreme Court Justice William O'Neill urges Democratic Party members to flee the party.

The lone Democrat elected to top statewide office in Ohio is slamming his own party for its weekend endorsement of former Gov. Ted Strickland in the race for U.S. Senate.

In a "personal heartfelt message" posted Sunday, Ohio Supreme Court Justice Bill O'Neill urged his 2,462 Facebook friends to "leave the Ohio Democratic Party immediately."

He has a history of criticizing party politics.

O'Neill called Strickland a "dear friend," but said the decision to endorse Strickland over 30-year-old Cincinnati councilman P.G. Sittenfeld in next year's Democratic primary was misguided.

He said an open primary would have strengthened whichever Democrat faces Republican Sen. Rob Portman next fall and accused Democrats of learning nothing from sweeping statewide losses last year.

A party spokeswoman said the decision to endorse followed a healthy debate.