Ohioblog: A Swing State Journal
Thursday, September 02, 2004
The voices behind the voice of Northeast Ohio's two most respected newspapers, The Plain Dealer and the Akron Beacon Journal, achieved unanimity while during a Public Affairs Series sponsored by the Akron Press Club at the University of Akron's Martin Center.
The conclusion: John Kerry is blowing the presidential election.
They hate it (you can expect both editorial pages to endorse Kerry), but they know it is true. And the truth hurts.
``Kerry should have put Bush away in Ohio by now,'' said Brent Larkin, editorial page director of The Plain Dealer, ``and I'm really surprised he hasn't.''
Candidate Kerry is nothing like Swift Boat commander Kerry. That leader turned into the enemy fire and risked all. This leader nips at the edges of the solutions such as poverty, unemployment and the war in Iraq, trying to offend no one.
That doesn't work.
We've seen it in the polls. Kerry is either overly cautious, wishing goodwill to all and offense to none, or he just doesn't have a clue.
Here is the bottom line of the panel discussion involving Larkin, Beacon Journal associate editor Michael Douglas and Sandy Theis, who may be The Plain Dealer's best and most articulate reporter: In a state in which voters hunger for an alternative to the policies of President Bush and the havoc their have wrecked upon Ohio's job market (230,000 lost), John Kerry continues to spit the bit of leadership.
He speaks of what he has done for his country more than what he will do for it. He has ideas. Read his position papers and you'll see that. But that doesn't mean he can make his case.
George W. Bush's most glaring flaw is also his greatest asset: He is determined to do what he thinks is right even if fact after fact indicate he is wrong.
Ohioans and most Americans would rather have a president who is wrong with certainty than one who is right in a wishy-washy sort of way.
You can see the panel discussion on Time Warner Cable Channel 23 Sunday through Wednesday in replays at 7 p.m.
Ohioblog will return to this discussion again, because it illuminates the coarse details of state politics. So stay with us and get your hands dirty.
- Steve Love
posted by Ohioblog: A Swing State Journal at 12:35 AM
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