Such a pity… well, no. It’s not. But the proprieties must be observed: “Former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland will seek to challenge Republican Sen. Rob Portman next year, launching what could become one of the top-tier Senate races of 2016… Strickland, who has been talking to donors and supporters in recent weeks, announced his decision to run in an email to supporters this morning.” Strickland has three major problems, here:
- He’s 75 years old [sorry: 75 in 2016 – ML]. That’s a bit old for a freshman Senator; and, yes, that’s a legitimate concern. The Democrats would get a max of two terms out of him, tops, and I’m being kind in pretending that they’d even have the chance.
- His past record. This article here mentions Strickland’s habit of spending the last fewe years working for people and groups who more or less hate everything that gives Ted Strickland his crossover appeal; to that I’ll add a little matter of some local corruption from 2010 (the fallout from that is still merrily bubbling along). There’s an existing file on this guy, in other words. One that the Portman campaign is already perusing, assuming that they didn’t just memorize it.
- And then, of course, there’s the minor matter of the 2014 governor’s election. No, not the 49/46 squeaker from 2010; the 64/33 blowout from 2014 that Ted Strickland didn’t have the nerve to even show up for. And he should have shown up for it; the fact that he didn’t pretty much confirms the conventional wisdom that Ohio is better off under John Kasich’s leadership than it was under Strickland’s.
Note that I said ‘futile,’ not ‘doomed:’ [mc_name name=’Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’P000449′ ] can always implode, or maybe get hit by a bus, or perhaps Nega-Ohio will launch a sinister plan to replace Ted Strickland with a cyborg clone that can hack the election returns. But there is very much a question of what, exactly, Ted Strickland wants to do as Senator, besides maybe eventually die in office. He certainly won’t be allowed to be a ‘centrist,’ even by the Democrats’ flexible definition of the term; and it was Democratic extremism in 2010 that hounded him out of office in the first place. I suppose that it all comes down to ego and petulance. Which are, alas, fairly common reasons why people do things in politics.
(Image via Shutterstock)
Moe Lane (crosspost)
PS: [mc_name name=’Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’P000449′ ]’s campaign gave a response that will set the tone from here on out: “Portman, in a statement, said he “welcomed” Strickland “back to Ohio.””