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Democrats Crushed in Ohio: What It Means, and What It Could Mean

So what will Kasich do? This is the same Republican who tried to raise taxes on the oil and gas industry, refused to privatize the Ohio Turnpike, and pushed through Medicaid expansion in the face of strong Republican opposition.

Yesterday, Democrats in general were simply crushed in Ohio. Only 38% of voters turned out to give Republican Governor John Kasich a 31 point victory over the deeply flawed, corporatist Democratic nominee Ed Fitzgerald. I predicted something like this back in August, but the margin of Fitzgerald’s defeat exceeded even my expectations. Hell, the worthless bastard couldn’t even carry his own county where he is still County Executive for another two months, Cuyahoga. It was the largest margin by far in any statewide race, but every single Democrat got soundly trounced. The closest margin was the Treasurer’s race, where the truly despicable spoiled child Josh Mandel won by “only” 11 points.

Republicans added to their already large majorities in the State House and Senate, and took 12 out of 16 Congressional seats.

There were  few bright spots, though. The Green candidate for governor, Anita Rios, actually did get 3%, or over 99,000 votes, three of them from my household. A Democrat with a strong labor record, Armond Budish, defeated a well-financed Republican CEO for Cuyahoga County Executive by a healthy margin. Cleveland voters overwhelmingly passed a measure to ban traffic cameras. My very own suburb of Euclid easily passed a levy to increase funding for my favorite socialist institution, the Euclid Public Library.

I think what is very important to remember here is that voter turnout was historically low, for a very simple reason: for the most part, when it comes down to the declining standard of living which most Ohioans and Americans are experiencing, there is no difference between the two fascistic parties. Nationally, according to all sorts of exit polls I saw on the corporate media, about 78% say they are either the same or worse off financially than they were a few years ago, and THAT is their #1 issue. Neither party addressed this at all, so it’s no surprise that most simply didn’t bother to vote.

In Ohio, I understand the percentages were about the same, with only 22% of voters satisfied with their lot. It appears they showed up to vote, along with a few others like me who just vote no matter what. Of course, most of the top 22% are undoubtedly Republican, so the results really aren’t a surprise given the Democrats’ blunders at the top of the state ticket and the disgusting actions, and inactions, of national Democrats from Obama on down to the Congressional level. Why should voters support them?

They shouldn’t. And didn’t. As Jon Walker has pointed out, though, true progressive issues did very well nationally when voters, even in Republican states, were given the chance to vote on them. So all the Republican crowing about the triumph of conservative values is just so much balderdash.

Which brings me to what this election could really mean in Ohio, and it has presidential implications. Sources in my union have no doubt whatsoever that Republican lawmakers in Columbus will pass so-called “Right to Work” legislation the first chance they get. Then Governor Kasich will have a decision to make.

He knows what happened the last time he signed legislation to strip just public sector workers of their right to organize–the next year Ohioans swarmed to the polls to reject the measure by a huge margin. This Right to Work measure will effectively emasculate ALL unions in Ohio. If he signs the bill, there will be a repeat of his worst defeat, and he knows it. A ballot initiative to repeal Right to Work would  generate at LEAST 60% voter turnout in Cuyahoga County alone, and that’s enough for it to succeed, no matter what the rest of the state does.

So what will Kasich do? This is the same Republican, remember, who tried to raise taxes on the oil and gas industry, refused to privatize the Ohio Turnpike, and pushed through Medicaid expansion in the face of strong Republican opposition. If he kisses his own party’s ass, he’ll sign the bill, see it shot down in flames, see his party lose a lot of seats in the Statehouse in 2016, and be at least something of a lame duck for his last two years in the Governor’s mansion.

If he vetoes it, on the other hand, he can present himself as a maverick who does what he thinks is right, no matter what his party leadership says, and lots of voters nationally like mavericks. He could even run for President. I don’t really know whether or not Kasich has White House ambitions, but if he vetoes this impending corporatist piece of legislation, he just might do that. He’d even have a good selling point to national Republicans–he would carry Ohio over The Clinton.

So stay tuned; this could get interesting for all of you political junkies out there.

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Democrats Crushed in Ohio: What It Means, and What It Could Mean

So what will Kasich do? This is the same Republican who tried to raise taxes on the oil and gas industry, refused to privatize the Ohio Turnpike, and pushed through Medicaid expansion in the face of strong Republican opposition.

Yesterday, Democrats in general were simply crushed in Ohio. Only 38% of voters turned out to give Republican Governor John Kasich a 31 point victory over the deeply flawed, corporatist Democratic nominee Ed Fitzgerald. I predicted something like this back in August, but the margin of Fitzgerald’s defeat exceeded even my expectations. Hell, the worthless bastard couldn’t even carry his own county where he is still County Executive for another two months, Cuyahoga. It was the largest margin by far in any statewide race, but every single Democrat got soundly trounced. The closest margin was the Treasurer’s race, where the truly despicable spoiled child Josh Mandel won by “only” 11 points.

Republicans added to their already large majorities in the State House and Senate, and took 12 out of 16 Congressional seats.

There were  few bright spots, though. The Green candidate for governor, Anita Rios, actually did get 3%, or over 99,000 votes, three of them from my household. A Democrat with a strong labor record, Armond Budish, defeated a well-financed Republican CEO for Cuyahoga County Executive by a healthy margin. Cleveland voters overwhelmingly passed a measure to ban traffic cameras. My very own suburb of Euclid easily passed a levy to increase funding for my favorite socialist institution, the Euclid Public Library.

I think what is very important to remember here is that voter turnout was historically low, for a very simple reason: for the most part, when it comes down to the declining standard of living which most Ohioans and Americans are experiencing, there is no difference between the two fascistic parties. Nationally, according to all sorts of exit polls I saw on the corporate media, about 78% say they are either the same or worse off financially than they were a few years ago, and THAT is their #1 issue. Neither party addressed this at all, so it’s no surprise that most simply didn’t bother to vote.

In Ohio, I understand the percentages were about the same, with only 22% of voters satisfied with their lot. It appears they showed up to vote, along with a few others like me who just vote no matter what. Of course, most of the top 22% are undoubtedly Republican, so the results really aren’t a surprise given the Democrats’ blunders at the top of the state ticket and the disgusting actions, and inactions, of national Democrats from Obama on down to the Congressional level. Why should voters support them?

They shouldn’t. And didn’t. As Jon Walker has pointed out, though, true progressive issues did very well nationally when voters, even in Republican states, were given the chance to vote on them. So all the Republican crowing about the triumph of conservative values is just so much balderdash.

Which brings me to what this election could really mean in Ohio, and it has presidential implications. Sources in my union have no doubt whatsoever that Republican lawmakers in Columbus will pass so-called “Right to Work” legislation the first chance they get. Then Governor Kasich will have a decision to make.

He knows what happened the last time he signed legislation to strip just public sector workers of their right to organize–the next year Ohioans swarmed to the polls to reject the measure by a huge margin. This Right to Work measure will effectively emasculate ALL unions in Ohio. If he signs the bill, there will be a repeat of his worst defeat, and he knows it. A ballot initiative to repeal Right to Work would  generate at LEAST 60% voter turnout in Cuyahoga County alone, and that’s enough for it to succeed, no matter what the rest of the state does.

So what will Kasich do? This is the same Republican, remember, who tried to raise taxes on the oil and gas industry, refused to privatize the Ohio Turnpike, and pushed through Medicaid expansion in the face of strong Republican opposition. If he kisses his own party’s ass, he’ll sign the bill, see it shot down in flames, see his party lose a lot of seats in the Statehouse in 2016, and be at least something of a lame duck for his last two years in the Governor’s mansion.

If he vetoes it, on the other hand, he can present himself as a maverick who does what he thinks is right, no matter what his party leadership says, and lots of voters nationally like mavericks. He could even run for President. I don’t really know whether or not Kasich has White House ambitions, but if he vetoes this impending corporatist piece of legislation, he just might do that. He’d even have a good selling point to national Republicans–he would carry Ohio over The Clinton.

So stay tuned; this could get interesting for all of you political junkies out there.

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