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  • Ohioblog: A Swing State Journal





    Tuesday, September 14, 2004

    Ohioans come at this election from opposite corners 

    This should make Northeast Ohioans feel appropriately self-important: ``I would argue that Northeast Ohio will be the most important region in the state and thus the most important in the country,'' Cleveland Democratic consultant Jeff Rusnak told Mark Niquette of The Columbus Dispatch.

    The Dispatch, much like the Akron Beacon Journal and particularly every Ohio newspaper of note, has launched a series of statewide political wind testings. Niquette visited Northeast Ohio to test the conventional political wisdom that a Democrat must carry Cleveland and Cuyahoga County by 120,000 votes if he expects to offset the Republican votes in such areas as Southwest Ohio. The Dispatch's Lee Leonard visited there. Since Ohioans have not benefitted as much as other Americans from the economic upturn (?), Ohioblog will follow The Dispatch series and distill it for you so you don't have to pay the Web site subscription charge.

    Validating Ohioblog's point regarding the importance of religion in Northeast Ohio, Bruce Muurma of Buurma Farms near Willard, in Huron County, told Niquette that he likes Bush, in part because, Bush is a``good religous man,'' while Kerry is a Catholic ``in name only.'' (Ohioblog wonders if God thinks so, too; Ohioans can be a tad presumptious.)

    It is not lost on Northeast Ohioans, Niquette discovered, that of the 252,000 jobs lost in Ohio between July 2000 and July 2004, 40 percent of them came out of Northeast Ohio, leaving Cleveland the most poverty-pocked city in the country.

    Southwest Ohioans take a different view. They figure, mostly, that President Bush is on the right track and they aren't about to jump the good ship Bush-Cheney for former Swift Boat driver John Kerry. Jack carnahan, a retired, 73-year-old military man, is a registered Democrat in suburban Clermont County, but he doesn't like the way Kerry lays out, after the fact, how he would have handled the war in Iraq.

    ``When Kerry promotos what he would have done, how he would have done it, I don't believe it,'' Carnahan told The Dispatch's Lee. ``Second-guessing is easy.''

    So is voting on Nov. 2. All Ohioans have to do is do it – and, who knows, we might really hold the fate of the world in our hands.

    - Steve Love

    posted by Ohioblog: A Swing State Journal at 9:55 PM



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