Last updated: February 20. 2014 11:43PM - 2528 Views
By - jlynott@civitasmedia.com

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A Dauphin County attorney whose law license was suspended said he will be honest about his past when he runs for office this year.

Andrew “Andy” Ostrowski announced his candidacy last week for the seat held by U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta, R-Hazleton. Barletta, former mayor of Hazleton, is seeking his third term.

Ostrowski, 48, of Susquehanna Township, said he will run as a Democrat after after collecting signatures and filing on March 11 for the 11th Congressional District.

He also said he plans to file to have his license reinstated after it was suspended for a year and day in February 2010 by the state Supreme Court.

Reached by phone, Ostrowski said he’s been gaining support for his candidacy and was in Luzerne County on Thursday.

In federal court, Ostrowski asked to have the disciplinary hearing reopened and license reinstated based on new evidence that he suffers from post traumatic stress disorder, but admitted to mishandling a civil rights case in 2004 that led to the suspension.

“I let a client down,” Ostrowski said.

The details will come out during the campaign and they’ll come from him.

“One of the issues is the candidate. I owe it to the voters to talk about it all,” he said.

Documents filed in federal court detail his previous use of marijuana, mental health treatment and diagnosis for post traumatic stress disorder as a result of third-degree burns received in a childhood accident.

“It’s going to end up being a positive thing,” Ostrowski said of his suspension. “I have absolutely nothing to hide about my past. I fully expected to have this discussion. I wanted to have this discussion.”

He had accepted responsibility and with the state Disciplinary Counsel agreed to probation and a stay of a period of six months probation. However the state Disciplinary Board rejected the agreement and issued its own punishment.

Ostrowski raised the issue of him being singled out because he has been outspoken about the courts and judges through his Pennsylvania Civil Rights Law Network created in 2010.

“In retrospect, I am a political target,” Ostrowski said.

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