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Why does Gov. Ted Strickland Hate Obie?

July 14th, 2010 Matt View Comments

 

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State Rep. Danny Bubp Questions Ted Strickland on Guns

July 14th, 2010 Matt View Comments

From Jim Heath on ONN:

David Pepper Desperately Scrambling to Raise Taxes on Property Owners, Especially the Elderly on Fixed Incomes, to Pay for the Bengals

July 14th, 2010 Matt View Comments

And Ohio House Democrats are happy to help:

A plan to reduce the property tax rollback for Hamilton County’s wealthiest property owners would raise millions of dollars to pay off the debt on the county’s two professional sports stadiums.

There’s only one problem: It needs a change in state law to move forward.

Local lawmakers say while it’s not impossible to change Ohio law to make Commissioner David Pepper’s proposal possible, it’s a long shot before commissioners have to vote on the rollback in November.

Keary McCarthy, spokesman for Ohio House Speaker Armond Budish, D-Beachwood, said only two voting session days tentatively are scheduled before November and those are “as needed” on Sept. 14 and 15.

McCarthy said the key is finding a legislator willing to carry or promote Pepper’s plan as state legislation. If one is willing, the Senate president and House speaker can call state lawmakers back to Columbus to vote.

“It’s not impossible,” McCarthy said, but he said this is the first he heard of Pepper’s idea.

Pepper proposes a partial reduction in the upcoming November property tax rollback. The Democrat believes the fairest way is to put a limit on the size of the tax break a property owner can get. He hasn’t proposed what the cap would be and says it could change annually.

Currently, the biggest homes get the biggest break {minus} sometimes more than $1,000 per year. Meanwhile, the average homeowner sees a savings of about $63.

By placing an upper limit on how much of a break an individual homeowner can get, the plan could raise millions in taxes although most middle-class homeowners wouldn’t pay higher property taxes.

“The approach I have proposed is very standard among places with property tax rebates,” Pepper said.

By law, commissioners can reduce or even eliminate the property tax rollbacks.

The problem with Pepper’s plan comes because the law that was written in 1996 to create the property tax rollback said that the rollback must be a uniform percentage of the taxes on a homestead, according to John Kohlstrand, communications director for the Ohio Department of Taxation.

With the 7th highest sate and local tax burden in the nation and 11% unemployment, thank goodness a candidate on the statewide Democrat ticket is busy finding ways to force taxpayers to pay for stadiums.

Watchdog Group is Upset with Speaker Armond Budish’s Legislative Priorities

July 14th, 2010 Matt View Comments

So, uh, they put Jessica Hodges in a bullfrog suit outside his law office:

Although Andy Devine got Froggy to plunk his magic twanger on the 1950s television show “Andy’s Gang,” Hodges in her bullfrog costume couldn’t get Budish to appear from his office – magically or otherwise.

Rahm Emanuel’s Brother Orchestarted LeBron James’ “Decision”

July 13th, 2010 Matt View Comments

From Advertising Age:

By now you’ve heard the offense against basketball star LeBron James’ one-hour TV special to announce his team choice — that it was narcissistic, sullied his brand and blurred the journalistic line for ESPN. But what you haven’t heard is the defense of the man who helped put the show together: uber-agent Ari Emanuel, who says “The Decision” forwarded the paradigm for advertiser-funded programming.

In an exclusive interview with Advertising Age, Mr. Emanuel, co-CEO of the William Morris Endeavor agency, helped fill in some of the gaps on the backstory of how the program came together, and addressed the naysayers. “Everybody can say what they want — it was the wrong decision, there was too much hoopla, whatever — but for me it was about doing the event, getting the advertisers to participate and doing it for charity,” Mr. Emanuel said. “This was a major success for advertisers, and we’re getting closer to pushing the needle on advertiser-content programming.”[...]

How it began
It began when Mr. Emanuel was sitting with media mogul David Geffen at an NBA Finals game in Los Angeles last month and was approached by Mr. James’ business manager, Maverick Carter, and Mr. Gray. The group talked about how best to announce Mr. James’ team choice and settled on the concept of a TV show. Mr. Emanuel looped in William Morris Endeavor partner Mark Dowley, the former McCann Erickson vice chairman.

Read the rest here.

The Creepy, Crawly Statists of the Columbus City Council

July 13th, 2010 Matt View Comments

From Robert Vitale in The Columbus Dispatch:

The Columbus City Council voted last night to end tax breaks for three companies that didn’t live up to promises that they’d keep and add workers to local payrolls.

Taxpayers didn’t lose a dime on the deals, Development Director Boyce Safford III said. The city pays out such incentives after it collects taxes from businesses and their workers.

The three businesses – on the Far West, South and Northeast sides – had projected they’d employ a combined 571 people in Columbus by now. The totals: 385, including just three of a once-estimated 93 new jobs.

“If you don’t create and retain jobs … you don’t get a tax break from the city,” said Councilman Andrew J. Ginther, who heads the council’s finance committee.

But were the businesses returning a profit to shareholders and showing signs of sustained growth? And if they ran into problems,severe financial punishment is supposed to help?

This sort of insane micromanagement of businesses by corrupt big-city Democrats shows the inherent problems with politically charged tax abatements. Andrew Ginther, who studied “peace and conflict resolution at the University of Ulster and Queen’s College in Northern Ireland,” thinks he is qualified to tell risk-taking entrepreneurs exactly how many employees they need.

How worse off would Columbus’ local economy be if state government and The Ohio State University weren’t stuck here?

Ted Strickland Gets Outfished by Frances!

July 12th, 2010 Matt View Comments

"When it comes to fishing, size matters."

Holy carp that is embarrassing:

In the annual Governor’s Fish Ohio Day today Gov. Ted Strickland and company were outfished by an-all women team that included his wife, Frances.

Even though Strickland reeled in a walleye on his first cast his boat managed to land only 10 walleye.

But Frances Strickland’s boat reeled in 21 walleye.

In all, the field – which included politicians, Ohio Division of Wildlife and Ohio Department of Natural Resources officials and members of the media – caught 165 walleye in a shortened version of the annual event. All of the fish were cleaned, filleted and given to a food bank.

But Ted is used to getting humiliated by women… Remember, it was Laura Bischoff who out shot him in a competition.

Exit Question: Did they all have fishing licenses?

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Treasurer Kevin Boyce’s Campaign Manager QUITS

July 12th, 2010 Matt View Comments

And Team Mandel sends out an appropriate response:

Effective today, Treasurer Kevin Boyce’s Campaign Manager has quit the Boyce campaign. Marquez Brown’s departure comes in the wake of numerous news stories and editorials outlining growing cronyism, pay-to-play and ethics problems in Boyce’s office.

Brown follows in a long line of Boyce staffers who have left Boyce over the past year, including his Chief of Staff, Executive Assistant, Communications Director, Regional Outreach Director and Fundraising Director. Democratic operatives remain consistent in explaining that this mass exodus from Boyce’s operation is due to his poor management skills, inability to understand the office, arrogance and growing ethics problems.

Brown is also the Public Policy Coordinator at Lorain County Community College.

Buckeye Institute Interviews Ohio House Republican Leader Bill Batchelder

July 12th, 2010 Matt View Comments

The Buckeye Institute interviewed Medina Republican Rep. Bill Batchelder, a brilliant legal scholar who has been a champion of conservative principles in Ohio before many TEA Party activists were born. It’s worth watching, even though he’s not wearing one of his famous searsucker suits:

Part 1:

Part 2:

The State of Ohio Will Gladly Sell Your Private Information for $0.00139

July 12th, 2010 Matt View Comments

From Joe Guillen in The Plain Dealer:

The state of Ohio has collected millions of dollars selling records with your name, address, driver’s license number and other personal information so it can be used in all sorts of ways, from crafting insurance policies to screening job candidates.

Since 2005, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles has sold more than 1.39 trillion records containing personal information to various companies, municipalities and other customers for about $42 million, according to state records.

Most of those records sold for a fraction of a penny each — $0.00139 to be exact.

“It’s just amazing,” Sen. Tom Patton, a Strongsville Republican, said after learning of the sales.

But considering the Strickland Administration’s fantastic history of protecting personal information (see here, here, and here), you have nothing to worry about. nope

Akron Beacon Journal Slams Ted Strickland & Lee Fisher’s Mercantilism

July 12th, 2010 Matt View Comments

Is it a coincidence that once MTR Lobbyist Chris Redfern hires Dennis Willard, an unaccomplished loser, to work at the Ohio Democrat Party, the Akron Beacon Journal starts writing brilliant editorials?

Taxes WERE A Major Part of LeBron’s Decision

July 12th, 2010 Matt View Comments

From Brian Windhorst in The Plain Dealer:

He got close enough to pull off the major score. In addition to the weather and the city’s attractions for young, rich athletes, Riley knew the lack of a state income tax in Florida could help him sell it.[...]

That was why Riley was so amped up before his presentation to James in Cleveland a week ago. He packed up his seven championship rings, had his salary-cap specialists create displays to show how Florida taxes could save James money and brought along Alonzo Mourning to make an emotional pitch about how the team backed him up as he recovered from a kidney transplant.

It was also made known to James that the Heat would take care of his friends the same way the Cavs did — special treatment at the arena, changing practice and travel schedules to allow for money-making late-night parties in various cities, and perhaps even hiring a James associate in a high-paying position in the organization.

He follows other achievers from Ohio and elsewhere to Florida… It’s why Tiger Woods lives there. And Rush Limbaugh had the idea in 1997.

But don’t worry… Gov. Ted Strickland will still whip Ohio’s “runaway slave” on Ohio’s high tax plantation each time he plays in Ohio.

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Buckeye Firearms Association Endorses Ted Strickland

July 12th, 2010 Matt View Comments

Ugh:

Buckeye Firearms Association (BFA) has announced Gov. Ted Strickland (D) as its first endorsed candidate of the 2010 general election cycle.

BFA made the announcement on Sunday during a fundraising event at the Pickaway County Sportsman’s Club in Circleville, Ohio, with the Governor in attendance.

Governor Strickland has continued his long tradition of supporting Second Amendment rights during his first term as Governor. As a Congressman, his many pro-gun votes, including opposing President Clinton by voting against the “assault weapons” ban, consistently earned him an “A” rating from the NRA.

As Governor of Ohio, he signed HB450, giving our service members, ages 18-21, the ability to purchase handguns, similar to those in law enforcement. He also signed HB473, opening up hunting opportunities for the mobility-impaired. Many veterans, elderly, or otherwise impaired citizens now have the ability to take to the field for the first time in decades.

His support of SB184, Ohio’s Castle Doctrine bill, returned Ohio law to the notion that one is innocent until proven guilty should they need to defend themselves or their family while at home. SB184 also protects crime victims who are sued by their attackers for injuries sustained while trying to rape or kill someone. This bill also clearly defined a “loaded” gun, specified the proper way to transport all firearms in Ohio, and introduced many other needed improvements to Ohio firearm laws, for tenants, business owners, and visitors from other states traveling in Ohio.

“Whether your passion is hunting, sport shooting, self-defense, collecting, plinking or just supporting our constitutional right to keep and bear arms, you have no stauncher ally than Governor Ted Strickland. His consistent, tested and proven support for individual gun rights is second to none,” said Jim Irvine, Chairman of Buckeye Firearms Association.

Unlike the NRA, which have shown themselves willing to chip away at the 1st Amendment with the DISCLOSE Act and getting involved in GOP primaries by endorsing politically connected candidates with weak records on guns, the Buckeye Firearms Association’s record has been distinctly more conservative and principled. My understanding is that they started as a splinter group from Ohioans for Concealed Carry and have worked closely with Americans for Prosperity and the Ohio Freedom Alliance in organizing TEA Parties. They are a fantastic organization.

And because their group is so conservative, it is fair to say their message board shows that their most vocal members are not pleased with the endorsement.

And I’ve never heard Ted Strickland comment on if he supports what the most staunch gun advocates, including myself, support: ignoring home rule with local gun bans and unlicensed Vermont-style carry.

However, if based strictly on congressional votes, Buckeye Firearms Association made the right choice. John Kasich was one of the most conservative members to ever serve in Congress, but he let that central-Ohio squishy-Republican mentality lead him to vote against guns numerous times, declaring his votes as a statement of proud independence from political parties.

So the Buckeye Firearms Association have made their decision. Good for them. But they shouldn’t expect to have a Governor Kasich’s ear when he is busy shrinking government, slashing taxes and making Ohio a more prosperous state… and doing all of that while simultaneously keeping his promises to protect and expand the rights of sportsmen and gun owners.

In the mean time, I hope Jim Irvine can teach Ted Strickland and gun-hating social worker Yvette McGee Brown how to shoot.

BREAKING: More Problems in the Strickland Administration

July 9th, 2010 Matt View Comments

Word is that another one of Gov. Ted Strickland’s political cronies is in hot water. It involves an ODOT Deputy Director closely connected to the 3C Rail boondoggle. I’m sorting out the details now. Stay tuned!

Update at 3:25pm: The Dispatch has the report:

One of Ohio’s top transportation planners was stripped of her position this morning amid an investigation into whether she improperly tried to obtain a replacement driver’s license after hers was seized during a drunken-driving arrest.

Mandy K. Bishop was removed from her position as an Ohio Department of Transportation deputy director in charge of planning.

She remains on the state’s payroll pending a State Highway Patrol investigation into whether she used her position to get a replacement license from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles after she was cited on two misdemeanor drunken-driving counts in June.

Bishop was paid $101,296 last year.

Read the rest here. If it is inmates, Mayor Mike Coleman’s wife at the Department of Development, Commerce Director Kim Zurz, or drunken floozies at ODOT, problems with alcohol consumption appear to be a serious problem for the Strickland administration.

Bishop’s actions show the supreme arrogance and “above the law” mentality that state bureaucrats develop. But I suppose vast quantities alcohol would be necessary on a daily basis if my job was to help defend Ted Strickland’s 39 MPH 3-C train.

Bishop must be fired.

John Kasich Was Ahead of the Curve on LeBron James

July 9th, 2010 Matt View Comments

Remember when Ohio Democrat Party’s former blogger Todd “hit/skip” Hoffman’s firm built a website called Ohioans Against LeBron James?

The effort was called “Kasich’s 1 man movement against LeBron James.” Today, after an excruciating, classless 1 hour ESPN “FU Cleveland” special, I think this is an organization that all of Cleveland and sports fans throughout the state would gladly join.

Chris Redfern, it might be time to take down the website and move onto the next cheap $5 political hit.

Ted Strickland Loves Gilligan’s Income Tax More than the Cavs

July 8th, 2010 Matt View Comments

From CNBC:

Let’s assume that reports are accurate and that LeBron James is headed to Miami.

As with every other team but his current team Cleveland, the Heat can offer James a five-year deal worth $95.5 million versus a six-year deal with the Cavaliers worth $124.5 million.

But if you match up what James’ salary would be for the first five years in Cleveland and the five years in Miami, you find that the Cavaliers are only offering him $4 million more.

That advantage gets erased — and actually gives the Heat the monetary edge over — when you consider the income tax difference. With the help of Aaron Merchak of the Tax Foundation, a non-partisan tax research group based in Washington, D.C., we crunched the numbers.

Playing in Cleveland, LeBron would face a state income tax of 5.925 percent, plus a Cleveland city tax of two percent.

Over the first five years of a new contract with Cleveland, James would give back $3,953,060 combined to the state and city for the 41 games each season he’d play at home. But James would have to pay none of that for home games in Miami since Florida doesn’t have an income tax.

What will liberals think of LeBron James for skirting his civic responsibility by leaving Cleveland? Doesn’t he know that Cuyahoga County, with some of the highest property taxes anywhere, along with one of the worst tax climates in the country, we need him here to pay for state services?

Online last time, singing for King James, here are creepy old men and Ted Strickland (perhaps I repeat myself?):

OH-9: An Update on Marcy Kaptur’s Earmark Corruption

July 8th, 2010 Matt View Comments

From the Fox Affiliate in Toledo:

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The Word “Mosque” & And Chris Redfern is a Bigot

July 8th, 2010 Matt View Comments

The Ohio Democrat Party communication office has been shopping around this story for months… Apparently, since Treasurer Kevin Boyce, who has made corrupt deals with banks and investment brokers in exchange for campaign contribution, the solution is to scream racism!:

Race and religion are creeping into an increasingly contentious treasurer’s race between Democrat state Treasurer Kevin L. Boyce and his Republican challenger, state Rep. Josh Mandel.

The latest charges came from Democratic Chairman Chris Redfern, who called Mandel “a chameleon” who has developed questionable relationships with ultra-conservative politicians, talk-show hosts, bloggers and “birthers,” some of whom have made comments with racist and anti-Islamic overtones.

“Josh is using religion to weaken his political opponent instead of talking about his beliefs,” Redfern told The Dispatch. “At his very core he wants to divide us.”[...]

Mandel, 32, a second-term legislator from Lyndhurst, is white and Jewish. Boyce, 38, a former Columbus city councilman, is African-American and Christian. Amer Ahmad, his right-hand man in the treasurer’s office, is Muslim. (Boyce’s campaign deferred to Redfern to comment.)

The issue came to a head recently when Mandel’s campaign accused Boyce of “cronyism and corruption” because he awarded a $32 million, low-bid state investment contract to a Boston firm whose new lobbyist, Noure Alo, is friends with Ahmad, Boyce’s deputy treasurer and chief financial officer. Boyce also hired Alo’s wife, Walaa Waeda, as a receptionist.

Mandel then upped the ante, using the resulting news stories as a fundraising tool on his campaign website. In a short note to supporters on his blog, Mandel used the word mosque three times in talking about Boyce’s office.

The sad thing here is that the one screaming racist is the real racist… Redfern is playing into potential concerns about Josh Mandel’s conservative Jewish faith and promoting wild stereotypes of all Jews hating blacks and Muhammadists.

The truth is that the job opening for Boyce’s friend was ONLY announced at a mosque… not a church, a synagogue, an evening poker game but at a mosque. Just because this happens means that Mandel is prohibited from uttering the one word?

Redfern, who is a real scumbag and married a slutty Republican lobbyist after her wealthy husband was killed in a car crash, really knows no ethical limitations when it comes to political attacks. His comments are cheap and show that the Ohio Democrat Party is willing to mistreat religious groups in order to score political points.

And just when I thought this story was finished yesterday, the Muslim Public Affairs Council, a group who has defended radical groups like Hezbollah and Hamas and has organized war protests with communist organizations, gave the story new life in the pages of the Dayton Daily News:

Charges of religious bigotry are surfacing in the state treasurer’s race after Republican Josh Mandel sent out a fund-raising e-mail that used the word “mosque” three times when talking about his opponent’s deputy treasurer, Amer Ahmad.

“This is just the latest example of the Republican party’s gross exploitation of Islamophobia to advance their own campaigns,” said Edina Lekovic, spokeswoman for the Muslim Public Affairs Council.

What is meant by “Islamophobia” isn’t a critique of how horrible women are treated in Islamic-countries or an intense theological debate. Mandel’s crime was simply mentioning the details about where Boyce pretended to announce unnecessary, new jobs he created for his friends. “Mosque” is not a dirty word, but Kevin Boyce’s actions as Ohio Treasurer are dirty.

This is the worst type of racial politics imaginable, and the Ohio Democrat Party owes Josh Mandel a sincere apology.

Death Tax-Loving State Rep. Tom Letson

July 8th, 2010 Matt View Comments

The End Ohio’s Estate Tax campaign is not pleased with Tom Letson of the 64th District, as he is a big fan of double taxing people immediately after death. From their email:

State Representative Tom Letson is a Democrat from the 64th District is a second term lawmaker who serves in parts of Trumbull County. Letson is a lawyer who practiced law for over 20 years and has worked as an acting judge in Warren and assistant city prosecutor of Newton Falls. Letson is the powerful Chairman of the Ohio House Ways and Means Committee. Letson controls which bills get hearings and which bills can be acted on by the Ohio Legislature.

Letson has made the decision to not give Representative Okey’s House Bill #456 a hearing on ending the Ohio Estate Tax. He will not comment on why he will not offer a hearing on the Estate Tax Bill or when he will offer a hearing on the Estate Tax Bill, if ever.

If you think this is unfair and just politics as usual we ask that you let Representative Tom Letson know about how you feel about this. We would also appreciate you also letting Representative Mark Okey know you appreciate his help in getting rid of the worst Estate Tax in the United States.

Tom Letson Email:

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The School Choice Revolution in New Orleans

July 7th, 2010 Matt View Comments

Great things can happen in failing education systems when school boards, bureaucrats, and unions get out of the way:

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