Boy, did that backfire.
I don’t think the Strickland campaign totally took into account the implications of wasting a full week of messaging by making LeBron such a big campaign issue for them.
Think they aren’t running from it? Remember when Strickland’s communications director couldn’t stop tweeting about LeBron to the tune of dozens upon dozens of messages about him and Kasich? Since the announcement? One tweet. And no, it wasn’t about LeBron.
But I can’t blame her. One of the worst things Ted Strickland needs right now is a reinforcement amongst Ohioans that the state is unattractive to those perceived to be most important to it.
But LeBron’s departure did just that.
And now the big story in the Plain Dealer about why LeBron left has 575 comments and has been tweeted 1,281 times.
The expose’ details the main selling points used by the Miami Heat president in picking up LeBron James. Among them:
That was why Riley was so amped up before his presentation to James in Cleveland a week ago. He packed up his seven championship rings, had his salary-cap specialists create displays to show how Florida taxes could save James money and brought along Alonzo Mourning to make an emotional pitch about how the team backed him up as he recovered from a kidney transplant.
The tax benefits of Florida over all other competitors was so important to the sale that Pat Riley assigned his team to do a presentation on it.
So while the state of Florida utilizes its tax structure to make itself more attractive, Ohio’s governor sings parody songs.
And that’s the best Ted can do. Why? Because Ohio tax structure doesn’t compete with other states.
Just ask Peter Brown of Quinnipiac:
Republican critics often blame the state’s business climate for the job loss, though Mr. Strickland notes that the number of jobs in the state has actually increased in the last few months. What is clear is that the tax burden in the state is heavier than in most of the Sun Belt, to which many of those Ohioans have migrated.
Strickland likes to ignore his tax hike from last year and crow about an overall reduction in income taxes. But that reduction doesn’t mean squat if it still isn’t competitive with other states.
And that’s the lesson so many Ohioans learned in this whole ridiculous LeBron mess.