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Third Base Politics


Ted doesn’t comprehend what happened to him.

Yesterday, Politico released the first interview with Ted Strickland since voters booted him from the Governor’s office.

I don’t think he’s taking it too well.

It seems the Governor believes in two things that aren’t true; 1) he’ll be relevant come January 11th. 2) Ohioans like him.

“I wouldn’t call what we’re contemplating a shadow government, but you might,” he said with a laugh. “I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me. I think we all do. We’re going to make sure the incoming administration adheres to high ethical standards. We’re going to continue to fight.”

Strickland said Kasich’s 97,000-vote margin did not grant him a mandate but was a reflection of voters being “beaten down by this economy.”

A shadow government? You can’t be serious.

Methinks the Governor is taking the press he’s been getting while fighting for the 3-C a little too seriously. The only reason the Governor is getting media coverage is because he’s still the Governor. After Kasich is inaugurated, his opinion won’t matter any more than any other Ohioan.

As for having a mandate to be some type of “shadow government”? Well, in that case he’s gone off the rails.

Not only would any effort to do so be an unsightly disrespect of Ohio’s structure of government, but the belief that Ohioans are behind him is just delusional. In the final poll from Democratic polling firm PPP, Strickland’s approval rating sat at 41-50. 1/4 of Democrats didn’t approve of him and Independents had him underwater by 28 points.

In their last poll of the race, Fox News showed the Governor with just a 43% favorability rating.

In Quinnipiac’s last poll that asked voters questions beyond whom they support for Governor, Strickland was stuck again with a 43% favorability rating.

In other words, the reason the race was tight had nothing to do with support for you, Governor Strickland. It had everything to do with your scorched earth brand of campaigning in an effort to tear down John Kasich.

Strickland likes to say he only lost because the economy was bad. That’s horribly shortsighted. Strickland lost because after four years, voters didn’t believe he was the man that could pull Ohio back to where it should be.

A perfect example is in the final Fox News poll that showed only 27% of Ohioans thought Strickland had a clear plan for handling the economy and creating jobs. That’s after four years of being Governor and an entire campaign season. That lack of confidence in Strickland is why he lost.

Re-election campaigns are first and foremost referendums of the incumbent. And despite all the trash Strickland threw at Kasich, they still believed Kasich was better suited to be Governor for the next four years.

That doesn’t entitle Strickland to a shadow government. That entitles him to enjoy the economic environment he helped create.

What other crazy stuff did Strickland say? Oh yeah. This one is a doozy.

“We’ve got to hold the center in this country.”

In the CNN exit poll, Strickland lost Independents 53-37. ‘Nuff said.

But I must credit Strickland for one quote. In regards to the potential 2012 GOP field, he stated…

With the exception of Mitt Romney, the others are pretty far to the right, and I think are really harmful.

As many of my readers know by now, I’m not the biggest fan of Mitt Romney. While he’s still a far better alternative than Barack Obama, his ‘wherever the polls tell me to go’ brand of leadership has never impressed me. So I appreciate Strickland providing a quote that can be used time and time again in the primaries to highlight to conservatives why Romney shouldn’t be the GOP nominee.

All this said, I hope Strickland keeps giving interviews through the end of the year. It’s the gift that keeps giving.

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Third Base Politics is an Ohio-centric conservative blog that has been featured at Hot Air, National Review, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, and others.


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