Last week, former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland made it official. He’s running for Senate next year.
Cincinnati Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld was the first Democrat to announce his candidacy against Senator Rob Portman, and has already been raising impressive money.
What did Ohio’s largest newspaper say about Ted being back on the ballot?
Kevin O’Brien, deputy editorial page editor, The Plain Dealer:
Congratulations on your next term, Sen. Rob Portman.
Sharon Broussard, editorial writer, Northeast Ohio Media Group:
Strickland’s return says a lot about the lack of young Democratic leaders waiting in the wings to freshen the brand. The party needs them, even if someone like Portman might crush them in their first senatorial outing. Strickland should not have put his hat in the ring.
Ted Diadiun, editorial writer:
We’ve got an excruciatingly long slog to Election Day, and it’s difficult to imagine that Ohioans wouldn’t want to hang onto Portman as an antidote to the state’s far-left senior senator, Sherrod Brown. It’s only even money at best that Strickland will wind up as the nominee, so it’s hard to get too worked up over this announcement.
Peter Krouse, editorial writer, Northeast Ohio Media Group:
Ted Strickland has always struck me as a decent guy, and Ohio Democrats could do worse when it comes to nominating a candidate for the U.S. Senate in 2016. But I’m not convinced he would get the nod, his age being one factor. The Ohio Democratic Party knows it needs to up its game, and under new chairman David Pepper, it may encourage a hearty competition among hopefuls. A contested primary with a seasoned veteran like Strickland in the fold could actually bring out the best in whomever the winner may be.
Thomas Suddes, editorial writer:
Former governors, denied re-election, have indeed won U.S. Senate seats. Republican ex-Gov. Frank B. Willis did — in 1920. That was then. This is now: Republicans will carpet-bomb Ohio with ads boosting Rob Portman and trashing Ted Strickland. Pending further developments, Portman’s the favorite.
Christopher Evans, editorial writer, Northeast Ohio Media Group:
The death of the Democratic Party was confirmed Wednesday with the Strickland announcement. He is political pablum, yesterday’s bad news. Strickland should get out and stay out. It is time for fresh faces and ideas, not re-Treds.
Elizabeth Sullivan, opinion director, Northeast Ohio Media Group:
Ted Strickland’s entry into the Senate race is another sorry statement about the dearth of viable Democratic candidates for a statewide run in Ohio — a problem underscored by the disastrous gubernatorial candidacy last year of then-Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald. If Strickland is the best the Democrats can do, that’s far from a stirring mandate.
“He is not a particularly strong candidate; he never learned to speak to Democratic voters in the northern part of the state.”
Another Democrat, Jerry Austin, isn’t too thrilled either.
“He’s going to be 75” in 2016, Austin said. “Everybody thinks he’s the strongest candidate because the Democrats have such a weak bench.”
Of course, with Strickland’s failed record as governor, it’s hard to blame even his fellow Democrats for their lack of enthusiasm.