Ohio2006 Blog

News, analysis, and comments on Ohio elections.

Wednesday, September 27

Congressional Races: News and Notes

I know, I just did one of these yesterday, but the news about Ohio Congressional races just keeps flooding in:

Senate: An article in the Cleveland Plain Dealer today asks, "Could a Blackwell loss sink DeWine as well?" Reporter Thomas Ott says political observers agree that "if Blackwell's double-digit deficit in the polls turns into a thrashing on Election Day, it may hurt [DeWine]," due more to "low turnout" than "ideology and anti-Republican backlash," as "dispirited Republican voters decide to stay home." An editor of the Cook Report notes that "Governors' races are bigger drivers in getting voters out than Senate races. There's a lot more work that goes into not getting caught in the undertow." Political consultant Dale Butland discounts the possibility that overconfident Democrats will skip voting, because "when you've been wandering in the wilderness as long as Democrats in this state I don't think anyone is going to be complacent." The article notes that Brown and Strickland toured the state together in August and made two joint appearances this month, but DeWine and Blackwell have not stood together since Labor Day weekend.

1st District: The Hill reports today that Rep. Steve Chabot (R-Cincinnati) has earmarked $1.6 million through the fiscal 2007 Labor-HHS-Education appropriations bill to benefit five Cincinnati institutions that are closely tied to some of his biggest financial backers. All of them (the symphony orchestra, a museum, two universities, and a hospital) have members of Chabot’s inner circle of contributors and fundraisers on their boards of directors. Chabot is a longtime critic of pork-barrel spending and of federal funding for the arts, so the earmarks for the museum and symphony in particular are raising some eyebrows. Chabot has particularly close ties to Xavier University, which will get $300,000 for unspecified technology upgrades. Hat-tip to Black Cincinnati Blog.

2nd District: In the latest development in Copygate, Rep. Mean Jean "Xerox" Schmidt (R-Loveland) denies that her publication of a newspaper editorial based almost entirely on a Republican House Caucus press release was unethical because "it's not plagiarism if they tell you to use it." Schmidt has refused to retract the editorial or apologize for misleading the public. The campaign of Dr. Vic Wulsin (D-Indian Hill) said that Schmidt is "living up to her reputation as a 'rubber stamp' for the Republican party," since her "behavior confirms that she does as she is told by party leaders regardless of the moral or ethical implications." Campaign manager Mary Huttlinger asks, "What kind of leadership does this show? Why can't Jean Schmidt say she did something wrong, apologize for misleading her readers, and move on?"

Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-Cleveland
) and County Commissioner Peter Lawson Jones (D-Cleveland) will headline a fundraiser for Wulsin at the home of Subodh Chandra (D-Cleveland) and Meena Morey Chandra from 5:30 to 7:30 pm on Tuesday, October 3rd, at 2275 Chestnut Hills Drive in Cleveland. Suggested minimum contributions is $50. RSVP to rsvp-at-wulsinforcongress-dot-com.

13th District:The Chandras will also host a fundraiser for Betty Sutton (D-Copley) on Tuesday, October 10th, which will feature senate candidate and 13th District incumbent Rep. Sherrod Brown (D-Avon). For further details write to subodh-dot-chandra-at-chandraforohio-dot-com.

14th District: Lew Katz (D-Chesterland) today invited his opponent, Rep. Steve LaTourette (R-Painseville), to attend the "Support our Soldiers – Past and Present" rally set for 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, October 7, in downtown Willoughby at the Gazebo at Park Point across from City Hall. "Supporting our veterans, as well as those currently serving in the Armed Forces, should not be political," said Katz, a former Navy officer. "Too much politics already has occurred at the expense of our brave soldiers. I am encouraging a bipartisan discussion on this issue to ensure that our troops and military families are convinced that we are 100 percent in support of their incredible sacrifices."

15th District: Have you watched this video, entitled "No Dice, Deb Pryce"? It's devastating. The videographer dramatizes an actual encounter with Rep. Deborah Pryce (R-Columbus) at an airport, during which she admits (to a sympathetic stranger) that the Republican party has been taken over by religious extremists, and that she'd leave if she had somewhere else to go. Hat-tip to both Buckeye State Blog and As Ohio Goes.

18th District: Unlike the many Republican candidates who are distancing themselves from an unpopular president, State Sen. Joy Padgett (R-Coschocton) is hitching her wagon securely to Bush administration policies, including the Iraq Debacle. Yesterday's fundraising visit by Laura Bush is covered in the Canton Repository and the Columbus Dispatch today. The Repository notes that there was no mention of Bob Ney or Bob Taft or Padgett’s bankruptcy, but Padgett made clear "she’s tying her race for the 18th Congressional District seat to President Bush," despite his job approval rating of less than 50 percent. As to the war on terror, Padgett said "I stand with the president of the United States." The Dispatch said Padgett "voiced strong support for the president’s foreign policies - particularly the war in Iraq - and his income-tax cuts." Not much ambiguity there, although the Dispatch reports that Padgett differs from Bush on immigration (won't agree to any path to citizenship) and free trade (wants treaties to protect U.S. businesses).


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