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What Lee Fisher’s failed campaign means for everyone else.

There seems to be one consensus opinion between Ohio Democrats and Republicans these days.

Lee Fisher is going to lose.

Of course, we knew that going waaaay back.

The question is how large of a liability Fisher has become.

We first wrote about the situation in early July:

…high profile statewide races are primary drivers for get out the vote efforts that have a trickle down effect throughout other races.

If Fisher’s campaign still continues to fail to inspire volunteers to make GOTV phone calls and doesn’t have the money to help shape the message on Ohio’s airwaves, then there is little doubt the Lieutenant Governor has become a severe liability.

And going through the latest Quinnipiac poll confirmed some of the damage already done. If these numbers are even close to accurate, it means very bad news for more than Lee Fisher.

After all, when the leading and most well known Democratic candidate for federal office has only a 30% favorable rating, that damage rolls downhill.

But Fisher’s approval rating isn’t the scariest of numbers for Democrats statewide. What should worry Ted Strickland and every targeted Democrat running for Congress are the following:

  • When asked whether they would like their Senator to support or oppose the President, just 39% overall and 29% of Independents said support.
  • When asked if they wanted Republicans or Democrats to control the Senate, just 33% overall and 15% of Independents wanted the Democrats.
  • A number that should make Strickland in particular worry, just 31% overall and 21% of Independents approve of the job Fisher has done as Lt. Governor.
  • Is Ohio’s economy getting better or worse? Just 14% overall and 6%(!) of Independents think it’s getting better.
  • And finally, 75% overall and 87%(!) of Independents are dissatisfied or angry about how well government works.

What’s important to note when thinking about these numbers are that the feelings aren’t restricted to some universe where Lee Fisher and Rob Portman are the only candidates. Fisher’s inability to fight back against the strong messaging of the Portman campaign, along with the reality of Ohio’s economic situation, have created an electorate that is very clearly upset with how things are going.

If only 15% of Independents want Democrats in charge of the Senate, it’s safe to assume that number can’t be much better for wanting Democrats in charge of the House. And if that’s the case, what does that say for the vulnerable Democratic incumbents like Zack Space, Betty Sutton, Marcy Kaptur, and Charlie Wilson?

If only 6% of Independents think the economy in Ohio is getting better, what chance does that give Ted Strickland when he has flatlined poll numbers and needs to convince those same Independents that he deserves re-election?

On top of it all, with no one believing Fisher can win, what does that do to the number and quality of volunteers they should be bringing in to get out the vote? Think about this question not by how things are now, but how things could have been. If the Democratic nominee were an inspiring choice, there is no question Democrats would be better off than they are now with Lee Fisher.

Ultimately, I’d like to thank Ted Strickland and Chris Redfern. Without their tireless efforts to make sure Lee Fisher was their nominee, none of this would have been possible. You guys are the best.

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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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