A front-page Washington Post story on the Blackwell-Strickland race claims that Strickland has made serious inroads with the "values voters", hence his lead in the polls. Or, maybe the article claims that the economy is the major issue and Ohio seems to be in worse shape than the nation at large. The only clear thing about the article is that it is not pro-Blackwell. My view is that Strickland is the Dems version of Taft: pleasant, inoffensive, harmless; his opponents might say boring, but there is no theme to this pudding. No one denies that Blackwell has a theme, and is a smart, outgoing, and rhetorically very effective candidate. Yet, he has two problems: One, he hasn’t yet found his stride in the campaign, seems bored with himself even; perhaps his handlers are not letting him be himself (remember the problem with Reagan?), perhaps they are afraid that Ken will raise his voice every now and then. Two, the party establishment--a bit more moderate than Ken--has not yet seen fit to support him with any enthusiasm. Blackwell can have an effect on the first problem, but he has to act now. He should raise his voice and let people know he really wants to be governor. Show some ambition, growl a bit and let folks see the lion in him. Let Blackwell be Blackwell and his staff should step aside!