Trump and Bernie Dominate in New Hampshire; Sanders and Clinton Faceoff; New Scrutiny Comes with Kasich’s No. 2 Finish
With America’s first-in-the-nation Primary over and Bernie Sanders winning the Democratic contest, he and Hillary Clinton made news by debating each other.
Daily Kos gives debate highlights and some analysis in its “Pundit Roundup.”
Kasich’s second-place finish in New Hampshire has brought his spotty record a new round of scrutiny.
The Washington Post details the “education mess created by Kasich.’’
As Kasich markets himself as a moderate, The Guardian describes a record “that puts him a big step to the right of what many Americans would consider moderate.”
The Federal Election Commission (FEC) has asked a political action committee (PAC) backing his presidential campaign for more information on who made the initial $2.34 million in donations to the group. In a letter, the FEC said it’s seeking “information essential to full public disclosure.’’
The FEC’s interest in Kasich comes as more presidential candidates make money in politics a central issue in the campaign. Even Jeb Bush weighed in and announced that he supports overturning Citizens United v. FEC, the case that permits corporations to spend unlimited dollars on political advertisements.
Derek Cressman, author of When Money Talks: The High Price of “Free” Speech and the Selling of Democracy, visited OSU this week to talk about his new book. Former U.S. Labor Secretary and Professor Robert Reich recommends that we “Read this book to learn how to take back our elections from the billionaires.”
Make Sure You’re Registered to Vote by February 16; The Primary is March 15
The road to the White House – again – will be paved through Ohio. And there are lots of local elections on the March 15 ballot, too.
Are your registered? The deadline to register to vote or update your address is February 16 (next Tuesday!).
You can find everything you need to know about voting at the ProgressOhio Election 2016 page.
Or you can visit the voter registration page by our friends at Democratic Voices.
Kasich Sticks Taxpayers with Big Bill for Presidential Campaign Security and Voters Don’t Like It
Ohio voters expect to pay to keep their governor safe when he is governing, but not when he’s campaigning out of state for a new job.
AP reports that we taxpayers have forked over at least $350,000 this fiscal year on out-of-state security expenses for Governor Kasich’s run for president.
ProgressOhio’s totally unscientific but still believable Twitter poll showed 88% think his campaign should pick up the tab.
New Bipartisan Team Unites to Try to Legalize Weed Once More
A team of veteran political operatives put out a 22-page proposal that offers its collective talent to help weed business interests with deep pockets take a run at putting a medical marijuana question before Ohio voters in November, reports the Dayton Daily News.
The team includes Democrat Aaron Pickrell, a senior policy advisor in the Strickland administration; Republican Mike Hartley, a senior staffer in the Kasich administration, and Democrat Steven Stenberg, a Washington, D.C.-based direct mail and political strategist.
Ohio legislators are studying the issue too.
Ted Cruz Has Deceptive New Mailer That Critics Say Is Illegal; But He’s Been Anointed so It’s OK
The presidential campaign of U.S. Senator Ted Cruz is out with a deceptive new mailer that masquerades as official government business and promises people there’s a “check enclosed.” There’s no check. Instead, it asks for money, reports Huffington Post.
Progress Texas has filed a complaint with the Texas attorney general’s office, arguing that Cruz’s mailer violates a 2015 state law that says solicitations involving a fake check must have “clearly and conspicuously printed in at least 18-point type: ‘SPECIMEN-NON-NEGOTIABLE.'” The Cruz campaign is headquartered in Texas.
Cruz supporters aren’t too worried since his father, Rafael, joined with televangelist Kenneth Copeland to announce that the Texas senator has been anointed by God to be the next leader of the free world.
Young Activist Commits Suicide outside the Ohio Statehouse
On Monday, 23-year-old MarShaw M. McCarrel II, a leading member of Black Lives Matter and active with the Ohio Student Association, fatally shot himself outside the Statehouse.
McCarrell is remembered by friends and family for his passionate activism. Just last Friday, he was honored as a Hometime Hero at the NAACP Image Awards for founding the youth mentoring program, Pursuing Our Dreams; which launched Feed the Streets, a project to help Ohio’s homeless.
Democrat Paula Brooks Stuns Peers By Calling for An All-Appointed State School Board
Some members of the Ohio School Board are appointed by the governor and those are the ones who’ve been protecting the failing charter schools. Other members are elected and they have led the fight to make it easier to close the worst-performing charters.
The Ohio Constitutional Modernization Commission began evaluating the constitutional plank that created the board. Some members, including Franklin County Commissioner Paula Brooks, called for changes. She stunned fellow Democrats and a few Republicans by publicly saying she could support an all-appointed board.
Meanwhile, member Paula Brooks said she’d be supportive of an all-appointed board and member Roger Beckett said he’s interested in exploring options for creating a body that would be responsible for K-12 education and higher education.
Brooks’ comments caught the attention of local and state education reform groups.
“YIKES,’’ said Central Ohio Friends of Public Education on their Facebook page. “WHY in the world would she condone something like that?’’
The fast and furious criticism caused Brooks to start back peddling.
Lead-Poisoned Water and Zika Virus Come to Ohio; Too Bad Our State Health Director Has Zero Medical Training
State senators opened hearings on a billion-dollar proposal to help local communities update their water and sewer systems. Offered by Senator Joe Schiavoni, a Democrat from Boardman, the proposal comes as a handful of Ohio cities struggle to deal with lead that has poisoned their water.
The lead issue is causing Governor John Kasich some heartburn as he runs for president, reports Politicus USA.
Midway through a recent ‘town hall’ event in Bedford, Kasich took a question from a man who had read about the water crisis in Sebring, Ohio. He wanted to know one thing: “I was wondering if you’ve had a chance yet to personally apologize?”
“Well first of all, our top administration, the [Ohio] EPA, went immediately to the village,” Kasich said.
Ohio newspapers, however, say the state waited five months to notify residents of Sebring about its lead problem.
Ohio also learned it has a second case of the Zika virus.
Maybe that’s why Ohio law requires the state health director to be a doctor or have “significant experience in the public health profession.’’ Kasich appointed former Ohio Turnpike Commissioner Richard Hodges to the post. Plunderbund has the skinny on the man known to many as Highway Hodges, and the changes made to his resume to make it appear as if he has that “significant” experience.
Black Lawmakers Meet with Ohio Chief Justice On Possible Grand Jury Reforms
From the Columbus Dispatch:
Members of the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus who have been outspoken in the wake of police shootings involving unarmed black suspects in Ohio, met today with the Ohio Supreme Court chief justice to discuss grand jury reform.
Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor last month convened a task force to study changes to Ohio’s grand jury system, where it is decided whether suspects will face felony indictments. The goal, she said, is to make improvements and enhance public confidence in the system.
The Black Caucus has called for more transparency in the grand jury process. It also wants to see independent prosecutors appointed to handle officer-involved fatal shootings.
Kasich to sign Bill to Cut Money for Cancer Screenings, Pre-Natal Care; Infant Mortality Rate Destined to Worsen
By promising to sign a bill to defund Planned Parenthood, Governor Kasich will sign legislation that also targets programs that screen for cancer, support mothers through pregnancy and educate teens about domestic violence. Instead, the funds will be redirected to other providers, including dentist’s offices and school nurses, which do not perform these vital services.
John Kasich is No Moderate and a New Satirical Facebook Page Provides the Evidence
Governor Kasich’s second-place finish in the New Hampshire primary was fueled largely by moderate Republicans. He’s been telling voters he’s a moderate. He’s not even close.
Bustle offers this review of a new effort to show that Kasich is just as nutty as the others in the race:
In an attempt to highlight the candidate’s super conservative record and beliefs on women’s health, the Dr. John Kasich, Gynotician Facebook page uses excellent photoshop skills and satirical quotes to bash his anti-abortion agenda.
The Facebook page’s description sums up Kasich’s approach to reproductive rights, saying: “John Kasich knows exactly what’s best for your health – he’ll even make your decisions for you!”