The iOpener: O'Rourke Visits Cleveland; Lordstown Union Leader Criticized by Trump

Good morning, iOpeners. It's Monday, March 18, 2019.  St. Patrick's Day is 365 days away.

Democratic presidential hopeful Beto O’Rourke hosts a voter meet-and-greet in Cleveland today, one of several cities he’ll visit before he officially kicks off his campaign later this month in his home state of Texas.  O’Rourke stops by Gino’s Cento Anno on Denison Ave. this afternoon at 3:30 pm.

The union leader for GM workers at the now-idled Lordstown plant is defending himself against criticism by President Trump.  Trump had Tweeted Sunday that Local 1112 president David Green should “stop complaining” and that he “ought to get his act together and produce.”  Green issued a statement saying the union was “doing everything we can” to convince General Motors CEO Mary Barra to reinvest in Lordstown. 

Former First Lady Michelle Obama ended her visit to Cleveland by worshipping at the East View United Church of Christ in Shaker HeightsShe was in town to promote her memoir, “Becoming.”  She surprised the members of a church book club by attending their meeting, then stayed for the 11 am service.

Canton police have arrested a 37-year-old man on suspicion he fatally beat a 2-year-old boy.  Antonio Hardeman faces charges of murder, felonious assault and endangering children.  Police say the toddler, Kai’ja Derohn, was found unresponsive Saturday at Hardeman’s residence and was taken to a local hospital, where he died.   

Runners in Cleveland set a new Guinness World Record for the largest kilt race. More than 2,000 kilt-wearing runners took part, breaking the 2012 record of 1,764 kilt runners in Ontario, Canada.  Later in the day, tens of thousands of revelers watched the 177th annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade downtown.

March Madness is on for the Ohio State Buckeyes.  The men’s basketball team made the NCAA tournament with a regular season record of 19-14 and enters as the No. 11 seed in the Midwest Region.  The Buckeyes play No. 6 Iowa State on Friday in Tulsa, Okla.

Weather forecast: A 30 percent chance of scattered snow showers early this afternoon.  Partly sunny, high 38.  Tonight, a slight chance of flurries, partly cloudy, low 27.  Spring-like temperatures coming later this week, with highs near 46 by Friday.

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