Incumbent Republican John Kasich, a former Congressman, FOX host and Wall Street guy, is running for reelection. He only narrowly beat his Democratic predecessor and has had a bumpy first term with lots of terrible decisions. After doing his damnedest to be a Buckeye Scott Walker, though, he’s tacked back to the center and calmed down a bit. He has buckets of money and strong support from Big Business, and his poll numbers have been showing relatively steady improvement as the state’s economy seems to recover.
Democratic challenger Ed FitzGerald is the county executive of Cuyahoga County (the greater Cleveland area), where he’s done excellent work. He’s a former colleague of mine and a good guy IMHO. But he’s not too well-known outside of NE Ohio, botched the rollout of his first running mate (lots o’ tax problems) and his fundraising has been disappointing to date. President Obama isn’t all that popular here these days, and this is his last midterm election, which usually doesn’t bode well for candidates of the incumbent second-term President’s party.
Probably would’ve been better for FitzGerald to get reelected as county exec - which he pretty easily could have done - and have four more years of solid achievement to point to when he ran for an open gubernatorial seat in Columbus in 2018.
I wish it weren’t so, and I’ll be glad to be proven wrong, but I suspect Kasich can look forward to a second term - and will likely run for President two years hence.
Too early to despair. Still plenty of time for things to happen before November, especially for the national tide to drive state elections like this one. There’s plenty of video of various Kasich fuckery to put on the telly, and plenty of time for Fitzgerald to remind all the voters of his support of Obamacare.
Fitzgerald seems to be an amazing candidate. Awesome resume. I think the reason he’s running is because he can beat Kasich(although it’s less than 50-50 than he will), but Kasich is strong enough that it won’t be a particular disappointment if he falls short. Then he’d be the obvious frontrunner in 2018, or he could challenge Rob Portman in 2016.
Interesting insights, but if not FitzGerald, who would you put at the top of the Democratic ticket? I haven’t seen him in person but he seems to be running a pretty decent campaign. Of course, I may be a cockeyed optimist – I’m one little blue dot in a sea of red over here in Miami County.
He’ll probably lose, but only because incumbents have advantages and Kasich’s approval probably is too high for the voters to turn him out. Plus the usual problems with Democratic turnout in a midterm election.
But it looks like he’ll come close enough to make an impressive showing, and could even win. If he does, I expect he’ll be a Presidential contender in 2020 or 2024.