Post-Election Progressive Scorecard Update: Kasich 3, Obama 0

In a previous entry on Fire Dog Lake, I gave Republican Governor John Kasich of Ohio a 1-0 lead over Democratic President Barack Obama on issues since the 2012 election because the Kasich Administration opposed a proposal by Obama's Department of Agriculture to cut Food Stamp benefits for many recipients by up to 50%:

http://my.firedoglake.com/ohiogringo/2012/11/13/post-election-progressiv...

Now Kasich has out-progressived Obama again, not once, but twice, in just a couple of days. First, in the wake of Republican Governor Snyder's pushing Michigan over the economic justice cliff into the ranks of so-called "Right to Work" states, Kasich was asked at a press conference if he had any plans to do the same in Ohio. 

Turns out he doesn't. He basically said he had better things to do when he said,

I have an agenda that I think is going to benefit the state of Ohio.  We’re doing very well vis-a-vis the rest of the country now, and I think if we continue to pursue the agenda I have and the legislature has, I think we’ll continue to be successful.

For the full article in the Columbus Dispatch, go here:

http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/local/2012/12/11/right-to-work-n...

That was on Tuesday, Then today, Kasich announced his plans for the Ohio Turnpike. When he first ran for election in 2010, one of his platforms was to privatize the turnpike like Indiana did. It turned out, however, that Indiana actually lost money by doing that due to the subsidies the state provided to the private toll road operator after its initial cash bonanza. To make matters worse, tolls skyrocketed as quickly as maintenance plummeted.

Kasich heeded the warnings and announced that, instead of privatizing the turnpike, he would use revenue from it to finance bonds that would be used maintain and improve roads throughout the state. No government employees will be laid off, and the Ohio Department of Transportation will continue to run and maintain it. Some fares will rise at the pace of inflation, but that's it. For the full story, I go to the Toledo Blade:

http://www.toledoblade.com/State/2012/12/13/Ohio-Governor-John-Kasich-to...

No doubt the free marketeers and privatization advocates and other vulture capitalists will be appalled. I look forward to hearing the howls of dismay from the Chamber of Commerce and maybe even the Teabaggers over these two decisions. 

The fact is that Kasich has been acting more and more like an Eisenhower Republican, which most of the current Republicans would probably call "socialist," ever since he got spanked by the voters who rejected his attempt to strip public sector unions of their collective bargaining rights. He refused to bring that issue up again, and proposed a new tax on oil and gas development. That last went nowhere in the Republican state legislature, but the union-busting efforts went the same way. 

Obama, OTOH, has accomplished exactly nothing that could be called progressive since his re-election. To be fair, I'll give him a chance. He'll get a point for sticking to his guns on letting the Bush tax cuts for the top 2% expire, and another each if he refuses to cut Medicare, Medicaid, Food Stamps, or Social Security. 

See how nice I am? I'm actually giving Obama the chance to overcome Kasich's lead on my scorecard. But given how positively fascistic Obama's actual accomplishments have been, I'll be amazed if he gets more than a single point. We shall see. 

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That's pretty shocking

LaEscapee's picture

I remember watching fro afar (La.) the futile attempts at union busting and it's good to hear that he has decided against privatization of the toll road. I have cousins that live in Indiana and have heard what a debacle that has become.

Also I agree that if the president holds the line on tax cuts and protecting our rights I'll give him points. Let's just say, I aint holding my breath at this point.

Thanks for the post OB

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I love your turkey picture. We've got some wild ones running...

Ohio Barbarian's picture

around here in Euclid. I drove across Indiana when I moved to Ohio from Colorado almost seven years ago. The interstate going through Indianapolis was terrifying; there were holes in the bridges and you could look down to see the trash-strewn terrain hundreds of feet below. In fact, the highway just sucked until I got to the Ohio line. 

I think Obama will hold the line on tax cuts, but nothing else. If he surprises me in a good way, it will be the first time since he was inaugurated. 

 

 

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I dunno, maybe I'm just a pushover, but if he

Glinda's picture

(and the Dems) actually refuse to cut any of these benefits, I'd give extra points, and be damn happy to do so ;)
 

To be fair, I'll give him a chance. He'll get a point for sticking to his guns on letting the Bush tax cuts for the top 2% expire, and another each if he refuses to cut Medicare, Medicaid, Food Stamps, or Social Security.

I have said over and over for years that Dems have no message.  When I used to watch more of the MSM and cable, turn on any channel and the Republicans would be saying the same talking points.  The Democrats, however, each had their own way of saying things, i.e., confusing, not to the point, huh? -- it was like there was absolutely no messaging system.

But from what I've seen since the election, I've seen more than one Dem say the same thing.  That's incredible.  I don't like what they've said, but I do like the fact that "somehow" they've obtained a messaging system, talking point, call it whatever.

But they're all saying that we have to, paraphrasing, reasonably "evaluate" Medicare and other programs -- after the 1st of the year. 

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The Democratic Party must be destroyed, as far as I am...

Ohio Barbarian's picture

concerned. And I  was raised by New Deal and Great Society Democratic parents. Hell, I was beaten up at least once a week walking home from elementary school in Texas because my parents outspokenly supported the Civil Rights Acts. They tried so hard not to raise me to be a racist that I didn't even understand the taunt of "niggerlover" being thrown at me by the other white kids as they threw their punches. 

So I was a strong, proud Democrat until Clinton broke his promise and pushed NAFTA through. Until about three years ago, I still had some hope for the Democratic Party. Obama and the national Democrats, Pelosi included, dashed that hope, though. They scare me more than any Republican. 

How's the song go? "Your enemy, he can't do you no harm, 'cause you know right where he's coming from. Beware the pat on the back, it might just hold you back. Smiling faces, sometimes, they lie."

I know most Republicans are my enemies. I've always known that. But these New Democrats, well, as far as I am concerned Obama is just the new, smiling face of Fascism, as defined by Mussolini as a synonym of Corporatism. The Republicans never betrayed me. I can't say the same about the Democrats. 

And, every once in awhile, a Republican comes along and surprises me by doing relatively progressive things, even if he does them out of fiscal conservatism or pragmatism or just for sheer political survival. 

John Kasich is one of those Republicans. He can be reasonable, as in capable of reasoning. Now, I think Obama will get the Bush tax cuts for the top 2% to go away, but only because if he renegs on this one, he'll lose all credibility with his base. Even the Republicans realize this, and they'll give it to him. But I also think Obama will gleefully allow them to extract a price from him on the other issues, to We The People's detriment. 

We're watching kabuki here. 

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