U.S. Rep. Timothy J. Ryan says his re-appointment to the influential House Appropriations Committee will have some sway on whether he'll run for governor of Ohio in 2014.
But the Democrat who recently won another two-year term said Wednesday he still hasn't ruled out a run for governor, presumably against Gov. John Kasich in two years.
Also, Ryan said the appointment positions Trumbull and Mahoning counties to continue the ''forward momentum'' started by already-made economic development investments in the Valley because even in ''tough budget times,'' the federal government still invests billions of dollars.
Ryan said his subcommittee assignment will be determined in the next few weeks - he served on the committee's defense subcommittee, which oversees military-related spending, before losing the committee assignment when Republicans made committees smaller after winning control of the House in the 2010 mid-term elections.
Ryan said in a conference call with reporters he hasn't been giving a gubernatorial run ''a whole lot of thought'' because of matters on Capitol Hill, most glaringly the "fiscal cliff."
Also, Ryan said he has not spoken recently to former Gov. Ted Strickland, also rumored to be contemplating a run, about Strickland's plans. Ryan has said his decision hinges on what Strickland does. The two are good friends and Ryan said he considers Strickland a mentor.
The pair talked briefly after the election, but it was ''more about the election that had passed than the next election,'' Ryan said.
Ryan said he would have a decision ''very early next year.''
Other people rumored to be interested are Ed FitzGerald, Cuyahoga County executive, and Richard Cordray, former Ohio treasurer and attorney general who now heads the Federal Consumer Protection Bureau.
Ryan said the appointment creates opportunities for economic development and to expand on advancements in areas like education and work force development, plus positions him to ''align local interests to where the money is'' in Congress.