Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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DeWine in trouble?

The Rasmussen Poll finds "DeWine trailing challenger Paul Hackett by a single point, 42% to 41%. Five percent (5%) say they’d vote for someone else while 12% are undecided.

Ohio’s Republican Governor Bob Taft is not helping DeWine’s cause. His Job Approval Rating is amazingly low at 19%. Seventy-nine percent (79%) disapprove, including 52% who strongly disapprove.

DeWine is viewed favorably by 48% of the state’s voters and unfavorably by 38%."

Discussions - 22 Comments

I take enormous pleasure in voting for the Libertarian candidate instead of Little Mikey "the Children’s Senator" Dewine or Weepy George Voinovich. I have done this since both profiles in courage voted for PNTR with the Chinese Communists in the 90’s. Since there is no real conservative on the ballot, why not vote Libertarian?

If you really want to be unhappy, consider how far Ohio has fallen. We used to send to the Federal capital giants like the great Robert Taft and John Bricker; now we are responsible for tweedle short and tweedle snivel. Of course the true depth of the calamity is best measured not by the highchairs the Ohio Delegation needs on the Senate floor, but by how badly the once great Taft family has gone to seed. Bad dynasty! No more Senate seats!

I think the decline of the Tafts shows that America’s political culture is still very healthy. It shows that merit will still win out over family name, although Taft might have gone to the Senate if the timing had been right. There is no way he will go now (unless Voinovich dies this term, or decides not to run next term, he is getting old).

I think one of the people most thankful for the Miers withdraw was DeWine. He was a loser no matter which way he voted in committee. If the Democrats were to run a serious candidate for the Senate I think they would have a shot, but I do not think they will run a serious candidate.

2006 is shaping up to be a tough year. Santorium is gone in Pennsylvania. DeWine, once thought pretty safe is now going to be on the ropes. Talent in Missouri is just as close. It seems like the wind is in the Democrats favor everywhere. We have time to recover and Bush defending the war is a good start. Ohio will be a huge fight in the Senate, Governor, and state offices. Nationally, I am negative about the party. I think we will lose the House and probably 3 seats in the Senate. DeWine should hold on, and a little luck might keep us the Governor’s mansion in Ohio.

If Petro wins the primary then I think the Republicans will lose the governship. I heard Petro speak once and wanted to kill myself. Maybe he was having a bad day, but I have never heard anyone speak in such a condescending manner. I think Blackwell would do well, but I am curious if Ohio African-Americans are as vicious as Maryland African-Americans. I think they might be given the comments of some of my classmates.

Hackett is a serious candidate if he runs. He demonstrated this in the special.

A serious person? No. But that’s very different from being a serious candidate. As someone once said of Ted Kennedy, who was, of course, unqualified in the serious sense when he first ran:

"The qualifications are that you must be 30 years old and you must win. So of course he’s qualified."

The Republicans are in deep trouble, some of which comes from the top and some of which is sown in their nature.
If something doesn’t change, ’06 will be ugly.

Cowards like Dewine who alienate the base are one of the reasons the Republicans are in trouble. Good riddence - Hacket will vote so far to the left he will be unelectable in 12, ditto Sherrod Brown.

Ken Blackwell will beat Betty and Petro like drums. The question is what will happen in a general election- a much much harder nut to crack thanks to golfin Bob and his Ca$h Money Crew. Coleman is an empty suit, but that often means people will project their likes onto him and vote for him. The other guy running for the Dems is an honest liberal; I hope he gets the nod so we can have a real debate on the function of State government instead of Taft’s phony feelgood campaigns.

Since 1980, very few senators have been defeated for being far-left.
The Dems who have lost have either had exceptionally strong Republican opponents or have represented very conservative states. The idea that voters would punish a Senator Hackett for being far-left is empirically wrong.

Remember Senator Metzenbaum. Was he ever defeated? Nope.

I do not think there is anyway Coleman can in the primary. His wife just had another episode (drunk driving) a couple of weeks ago. I doubt if Ohioians want to deal with four years of that, though it would be entertaining.

It is too bad because Coleman had his son enlist so he could run for governor. His son is risking a lot, and then Coleman’s wife blows it.

Yes, Metzenbaum was truly a leftist. A real bomb-throwing Stalinist.

Coleman is finished, sadly. Ted Strickland is not an honest liberal. He is from a conservative Democrat district in south-east Ohio that has been gerrymandered to elect a Republican. Yet he still won. He is the most dangerous opponent because he can tout many conservative credentials ("A" rating with NRA, some pro-life votes, Methodist preacher, etc...) Strickland will be the Democrat’s man.

The Republican primary is a two-horse race between Petro and Blackwell. When Betty drops out, Petro should get a boost and close the gap on Blackwell in the polls. If he does, it is a race. If not, he is finished. Both Petro and Blackwell are well-funded and proven vote getters. Blackwell currently benefits from greater name recognition, while Petro benefits from more money and state party support. For my money, I’m with Petro because I object to the way Blackwell uses religion and preaches in churches. Either candidate will have a tough race against Ted.

I sure hope that DeWine hangs on. He should be able to, and like him or not, he is the best Senator Ohio has had in roughly 30 years. Would I prefer a real conservative? Yes, but I’ll take DeWine over Hackett, Brown, or Glenn any day.


This is a very different state in a very different political climate than when Howard Metzenbaum held that seat. It could not happen again.

I don’t know too much about DeWine, but Taft sure has been a dissapointment has’nt he? It does’nt seem like he has done much there to make government smaller or more reflective of the Founder’s values. And then there is all of his corruption problems. Not a model Republican in my eyes. He probably means well, but he is not doing the job right.


I agree with you about Strickland. I think he is conservative enough, and folksy enough to appeal to many people who would ordinarily vote Republican. I have not heard anything terrible about him, and the typical Democrat message about providing for people, generating jobs, is the same as the Republicans have been dishing out for the past four years (with the exception of Blackwell). If there is no idelogical difference then why does it matter who wins? If he wins the primary Republicans are in trouble.

Not sure about the demographics of it, does Southern Ohio tend to provide a lot of support for Republican candidates? If it does, and Strickland runs, I think he has a very good shot.

If Petro wins the primary I will probably not vote or vote for Strickland unless something awful comes out about him. The State party needs to learn that ideas, not just power, matter, and I think Strickland would be a safe way to teach that notion. I think a guy from Southeastern Ohio would be interesting, though I probably think that because my parents from from Kentucky (although many people in Central Ohio could say the same thing, another plus for Strickland).

The only thing you guys are leaving out in this discussion is that the Ohio Democratic Party has not shown that they are capable of running a serious campaign in decades. Admittedly, they have had some fairly poor candidates in the last decade or so (Robert Burch for governor anyone?), but Lee Fisher was a decent candidate for them and they still were too disorganized to even come close to getting him elected.

I certainly hope that the Ohio GOP pulls itself together and, like Stephen, I’m strongly in support of Blackwell, but I don’t think DeWine and the GOP gubernatorial candidate are in as much danger as others have suggested simply because the Ohio Dem Party will provide very little support and the Ohio GOP has shown time and again that they can run effective campaigns and significantly out-fundraise the opposition.

Dominick Roark:

I’m curious how you know my name is Stephen. You can email me and tell me.

I agree with you about the Senate campaign. I do not think the Democrats will run a serious candidate. The guy I have heard they are thinking of running ran one campaign this fall for a vacated seat (I think?), and that has been his only exposure to politics so far. He is a veteran, so that makes him respectable (compared to DeWine) but 2004 ought to have proved that veteran status alone does not atone for wacky ideas.

I think the Democrats have a shot if they run Strickland. Last campaign was a contest about the state budget, with Taft’s opponent claiming Taft would have to raise taxes to plug holes in the budget, with Taft claiming the guy was crazy. Shortly after he was elected Taft ran through all kinds of taxes. If the Dems are smart they will use this to show that Republicans are big tax and corrupt.

What’s so special about Dominick calling you Stephen?? Most guys named Steve have the full name of Stephen or Steven, right? So, maybe he just guessed w/o thinking it over much, and got lucky with Stephen? 50/50 chance, really...

I guess I thought you signed as "Stephen Sparks" rather than simply "Steve", so it was just blind luck that I got it right I suppose, though "Fella" is right, it doesn’t seem like rocket science that I stumbled on to the truth…

In any event, I agree that Strickland has a chance, though less so, in my opinion, if Blackwell wins the GOP primary. It will be very difficult to tar Blackwell with Taft’s mistakes as Blackwell has been an open critic of Taft and the increasingly large RINO-wing of the Ohio GOP. Petro and Montgomery, on the other hand, have not, to my knowledge, ever had a bad word for Taft and can much more easily be damaged by his mistakes. Blackwell has been the renegade of the Ohio GOP for years now. Casting him as Just Another Taft Republican(tm) will be tough.

Again, though, I think Strickland will be horribly damaged by the ineffectiveness of the Ohio Democratic Party which has not shown any ability to fundraise or run an efficient GOTV program in almost 15 years. Certainly, it is possible that Strickland could grab the organization by the horns and force it to become something of substance, but the odds are heavily stacked against that. Furthermore, unlike most successful statewide candidates, he doesn’t come from a strong urban base that already has some familiarity with him. SE Ohio is sparsely populated and not a terribly good base from which to run a statewide campaign and even within his Congressional district, he has been far from a run-away winner, with most of his elections being highly competitive. There is no guarantee that he could even win a majority of the votes in his own district for governor.

Stephen - it could also be a hint that your e-mail addy comes up as stepspa (short for stephen sparks)? just a guess.


It is polite to refer to people either with a Mr. or Ms., or by their first names. Try it. It’s not that hard.

Your assertion that another Howard Metzenbaum could not be elected in Ohio today is completely unsupported.
Can you support it with some reasons?

Furthermore, I wasn’t saying Hackett is like Metzenbaum as a candidate. He ran a phony middle-of-the-road campaign and nearly won. If he runs again, he’ll do that again. My point, which was perfectly clear, was that if elected, he can vote like Metzenbaum and win re-election. Lots of leftists do. And Mezbenbaum did it in Ohio.

Master Frisk,

Blogs are informal. If that is a problem for you, stick with letters to the editor. Taking yourself less seriously requires perspective. Try it, it is not that hard.

It is easy enough to support the idea that a Metzenbaum could not happen again - look at the make up of state government at all levels throughout Metzenbaum’s career in the senate and compare that to the party makeup of statewide offices today. In the late 70’s and 80’s industrial labor unions were a major power in Ohio politics; now they are not. When Metzenbaum represented Ohio, ethnic Catholics voted overwhelmingly Democrat - now they do not. Cleveland was a good base for statewide office holding. Now it is not. The REagan realignment was unfolding; now it has unfolded. If you want a model of what kind of voting record a Democrat representing Ohio in the national Senate would hold, look at the records of other red state Democrats, many of whom are very afraid of getting knocked off because of what happened to the last Democrat minority leader.

Republicans should be much more worried about Sherrod Brown (a dyed-in-the-wool leftist) than they are about Hackett. He is running much higher in the polls and has money, experience, and pals in Washington.

Brown is a really good campaigner. On the other hand, he does not have a challenging district - so he has not had to work hard for his congressional longevity.

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