Between 2007 and 2012, there were periods when he had a temporary learner’s permit, which requires that a licensed driver be present in the front seat. In other periods during that time, he had no license at all.
This means that on the night he was discovered at 4:30AM parked in a secluded lot with a woman who wasn’t his wife, he drove illegally after dropping her off at her hotel.
The question that begs to be asked then is did Ed Fitzgerald regularly drive illegally without a license on a regular basis?
Today Vardon found the answer to that question from the president of Cuyahoga County Council, C. Ellen Connally, a fellow Democrat.
Democratic council president C. Ellen Connally said she often parked near FitzGerald in the county garage and saw him driving by himself.
“I’m pretty surprised,” Connally said when asked to respond to The Dispatch’s report.
“Every citizen has to comply with the law. I don’t understand what the slip up was,” said Connally, who has not hesitated to criticize FitzGerald on other matters.
Fitzgerald hasn’t even addressed the license issue personally. He left that to his campaign spokesperson:
“This was a mistake,” FitzGerald told The Dispatch, through campaign spokesman Daniel McElhatton. “I apologize, and since 2012 I have had a valid driver’s license.”
Just days ago, Fitzgerald insisted to Plain Dealer reporter Henry Gomez that he had a clean driving record.
Asked again for details surrounding the issue, the campaign told Vardon,
“We’re not going to answer any more questions about this,” said Lauren Hitt, spokeswoman for FitzGerald’s campaign.
Ed Fitzgerald is a grown man with a family and a job. What possible reason could he have for not bothering to get and maintain a driver’s license? That leads to another question. How did he get car insurance without being a licensed driver? Or was he breaking another law and driving without insurance?
He chose to ignore even the most trivial and basic responsibilities of being an adult. He chose to break the law by driving illegally, day after day.
What kind of poor judgment do you have to possess that makes you think this is OK?
Despite all of this, he wants you to make him Ohio’s next governor.
UPDATE: Jackie Borchardt of the Northeast Ohio Media Group reports that Fitzgerald went 10 years without a driver’s license.
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Not only was Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald driving with a learner’s permit when police found him with a woman in a Westlake parking lot, he had gone 10 years without a valid permanent state driver’s license.
He had the temporary permit for a few of those years, but from 2002-08 he had no license to drive in Ohio at all.
FitzGerald’s March 2008 permit application indicated he previously held an operator’s license and that his Ohio ID or license expired on his birthday in 2002.
During that time, when he would not have been legally allowed to drive, he served as assistant prosecutor, city councilman and mayor of Lakewood.
I repeat my earlier question: Is it possible to get car insurance if you aren’t a licensed driver?