4 Democrats for Ohio governor race clash in heated debate

COLUMBUS (AP) — Four Democratic candidates for Ohio governor used a debate in Toledo to differentiate themselves and question their opponents on hot-button topics including gun regulations and marijuana legalization.

The debate Wednesday was the Ohio Democratic Party’s fourth, but it featured only one returning candidate: state Sen. Joe Schiavoni, of Boardman.

Former federal consumer watchdog Richard Cordray, former U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich and former Ohio Supreme Court Justice William O’Neill were new to the debate stage. They’ve joined the race while three others have dropped out in recent months.

Cordray, an appointee during President Barack Obama’s administration who has union support, fielded the bulk of the attacks, to include his “A” rating from the National Rifle Association.

Kucinich refused during questioning to repudiate Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, who he’s interviewed.