I’ll update this as the day goes on.
First, we have NBC Political Director Chuck Todd on Twitter:
More evidence that OH Dem Gov Ted Strickland may be in better shape than supposed C.W.: he nabbed NRA nod over GOPer Kasich.
“More evidence” is an obvious reference to the Ohio Poll and Friday’s campaign finance reports.
Matt Naugle at Right Ohio:
John Kasich has repeatedly apologized for his vote on the assault weapons ban, noting that it doesn’t reduce crime. But Ted Strickland’s votes in Congress on guns are still better.
Clearly, with Kasich’s voting record and an attorney general candidate Mike DeWine, I believe it can argued that the Ohio Democrats have, on paper, a more pro-gun ticket than Republicans do.
I bet that was really hard for Naugle to write.
The big question is whether the NRA endorsement will have a substantive effect on the election. Unless the NRA spends any serious cash to promote their endorsement through election day, the answer is no.
Voters with serious concerns on the 2nd amendment tend to be very educated voters. They are smart enough to understand Kasich is with them on gun issues and, like Geraghty highlighted, they are going to understand the bigger picture.
Keeling should have stuck to the crickets. First, the NRA is traveling with the Governor in Ohio today promoting this endorsement. It was their first endorsement for the general election. The idea that the NRA would not “spend any serious cash” to promote their endorsement is just wishful thinking on Kasich part.
While Keeling is correct that gun voters are very educated voters on their issue, it’s a complete and utter fantasy to say that there’s any reason any such voter could possibly conclude that “Kasich is with them on gun issues.” As I stated earlier, Kasich didn’t vote against the NRA just once. He voted twice for an assault weapons ban, he voted against the wishes of the new Republican majority in Congress in their attempt repeal that ban. He supported federal handgun control, opposed legislation that promoted hunting, etc.
The NRA leaked the endorsement to the national political press. They made a point to emphasize that this was their first endorsement in the general election. They deliberately chose one of the biggest races in the nation to do so. These things didn’t happen by coincidence. The NRA is sending the GOP a message: neglect us and we will remember it and make you pay at the ballot box. John Kasich is a dead fish wrapped in a newspaper dropped off at Michael Steele’s doorstep. Jon Keeling’s only hope is that I’m wrong and that the NRA will uncharacteristically follow through with their endorsement come GOTV time. Fat chance.
Keeling then ends with this battlecry:
Strickland has failed to live up to his promise to turnaround Ohio. And that hurts 2nd amendment voters where it hurts…in their checkbook.
The “surely gun voters will be motivated by pocketbook issues more” is the failed battlecry of every defeated anti-gun politician I’ve ever met. It was precisely what the Fisher campaign said in 1998 when the NRA endorsed Bob Taft.
And now, it’s being uttered by John Kasich’s out-of-state propagandist.
Still, thanks to Dem efforts to broaden their tent, the [NRA] is likely to back a significant number of Dems — especially younger members whose seats are top GOP targets. In ’08, the NRA endorsed Reps. … Charlie Wilson (D-OH), Zack Space (D-OH), …— all of whom are top NRCC targets.
If the NRA gets involved in many of the same races this year, their signature election guides — distributed to their more than 4M members shortly before election day — could save some members who might otherwise be on the chopping block.