The Columbus Dispatch editorial board endorsed Gov. John Kasich and Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor for re-election. Read an excerpt from the editorial here:
John Kasich ’s first term as governor has been one of the most consequential, successful and remarkable in Ohio’s history. For that reason, he deserves election to a second term.
Four years ago this month, Ohio’s situation was dire. Devastated by the recession that began in late 2007, Ohio had lost more than 350,000 jobs, unemployment was 10 percent and thousands of Ohioans were losing their homes to foreclosure. The state’s dismal economic prospects were further clouded by state government’s fiscal mess. Gov. Ted Strickland’s budget had been cobbled together with billions of dollars in one-time money that would not be available for the next budget, creating an $8 billion gap that would have to be made up by cuts to state spending or a hike in taxes that stricken residents and businesses could not afford. Though running for re-election, Strickland had no plan for coping with the looming meltdown. Not surprisingly, he lost the election.
Four years later, Ohio has been transformed. Not only has the $8 billion shortfall been erased, but Ohio’s budget is balanced and includes a nearly $1.5 billion rainy-day fund. More than 245,000 jobs have been created and the jobless rate is down to 5.7 percent. Restructuring taxes has reduced the overall tax burden by $3 billion.
This resulted from the leadership of Gov. John Kasich and the team of professionals he assembled to remake state government. Kasich has guided the state not as a politician, but as a CEO righting an enterprise that had run off the rails.