For a candidate who claims to be running a positive campaign about jobs, this seems to be yet another “off message” foray.

Of course the Strickland=Obama is a hard line to sell, what with Strickland opposing Obama in the primaries after all.  Ohioans rarely connect its gubernatorial races as a referendum on the President.

That’s why Strickland’s approval rating has been rising while Obama’s been dropping.

Clearly, the Kasich campaign is trying to retool and find a new message. So now, they’re reduced to saying that people should vote for Kasich because it will “stop” Obama somehow.  Except it won’t.  And most Ohioans realize it won’t.

Maybe Kasich is just trying to throw his partisan base a little red meat because as NBC’s political director Chuck Todd tweeted a few days ago, the Republicans are concerned with Kasich campaign performance to date.  And that was before the “Chicken Shack” and Mary Taylor’s politicization of audits came to light!

Also today, ABJ columnist Steve Hoffman took the Kasich campaign to the woodshed for offering a substance-free campaign that promises everything but doesn’t seriously address anything:

Kasich now faces a huge burden as a challenger, one largely of his own making.

It is his job to present alternatives, but he has himself so boxed in, his only out would be to offer a massive downsizing of state and local government. Nothing remotely resembling that is now evident.

The longer this goes on, the more it reminds me of how Jerry Austin, a sharp-tongued political consultant based in Cleveland, once clarified a critique of a political opponent: ”I didn’t say you wore cheap suits. I said you were a cheap suit.”

The Kasich campaign is now reduced to hoping they can make the 2010 elections a warm up act for the 2012.  The only question is, is Kasich really planning to run for President again that early?