You won't be able to switch the channel without seeing Kasich, Strickland, or Portman. (Fisher has some serious cash to raise if he wants to join that group)
We can also agree on another fact - Ohio's economy and the jobs crisis is the number one issue in the minds of Ohio voters.
So, in order for Governor Strickland and Jobs Czar Lee Fisher to have a fighting chance, they need Ohio's economy to rebound sufficiently to satisfy their Turnaround Ohio promise of which both Kasich and Portman will most surely make them accountable.
Well, this morning the most widely reported indicator of the economic situation, the unemployment rate, once again showed increased job loss with a stagnant and disgustingly high rate of 10.8% unemployment in Ohio.
- The number of employed Ohioans decreased.
- The number of unemployed Ohioans increased.
- And it's the 10th straight month of an unemployment rate in the double digits.
And Strickland's defense? 'It's not my fault'.
Please list in the comment section how many times that strategy has worked in modern political history. Didn't think so.
And especially in this case, it can't work. Why? Because unemployment is such a personal issue to each and every individual.
The BLS recently reported total unemployment in Ohio for 2009 was a mindboggling 17.2%. That's nearly 1 in 5 Ohioans that are either out of work, gave up looking for work, or took part-time work in lieu of being unable to find a full-time gig.
In other words, there is a very good chance each and every Ohio voter knows someone who is suffering from the jobs crisis.
Is "it's not my fault" a good enough excuse to a family whose bread winner has been out of work for 12 months?
Or, as Kevin at OPO stated so clearly:
Ted Strickland is going to try and argue that he made the hard choices during the worst economy since the great depression and that he has the experience to lead the rapidly approaching recovery. And that John Kasich is a reckless conservative who used to work at Lehman Brothers.
Voters are going to see double digit unemployment, mounting budget deficits, stimulus dollars wasted and taxes going up – not to mention cabinet members resigning and staffers in court.
Can you honestly tell me that voters will then choose to give Ted Strickland four more years to try again?
Of course not.
For more analysis, check out my post, The Minutiae of Modern Politics.