I absolutely love the story that has been unfolding about the battle between Governor Strickland and the Indian commerce secretary. It not only serves as a glaring example of the differences between the Governor and John Kasich, but it also provides a real opportunity for hardworking Ohioans to understand how the November ballot will impact their everyday lives.

In case you haven’t been following the drama, it goes something like this:

  • The Ohio Department of Development signs a contract with a Texas company to manage the rebate program for buying new energy-efficient appliances
  • Governor Strickland, furious after finding out that the Texas company outsources its call center work to El Salvador, issues a ban on the overseas outsourcing of services for state government contracts
  • India gets pissed at Strickland and files “an official complaint against Ohio with the office of the U.S. trade representative”

That was Saturday. And Today Ted issued his response to India. Which is pretty fantastic.

I’ll print the entire letter he sent to the U.S. trade rep below, but here’s the money line:

Ohio is open for business. We believe in fair trade here, and we know that both our countries benefit from it. But let me say this as well — no one in India, or anywhere else, is going to tell the citizens of Ohio where we can create jobs or how we can spend our resources.

Hellz Yeah!

Great response. Strong. Defiant. And completely opposite of the stance John Kasich has taken on giving away Ohio’s jobs to overseas workers.

And it turns out that I’m not the only one excited about the Governor’s stance. It seems almost everyone commenting on the Dispatch article has the same opinion.

Let me repeat that: nearly all of the people posting comments about an article on the Columbus Dispatch’s website are supporting Governor Strickland and the stance he is taking. If you don’t know why this is completely amazing, please choose any article on the Dispatch website at random and go to the comments section. (disclaimer: don’t say I didn’t warn you)

The comments on this article are quite different. Here’s a good example:

“Great!! I for one am glad to finally see SOMEONE taking steps to stop sending jobs overseas,and that the countries who would take these jobs away from us are mad.Let’s keep pissing them off! Way to go and PLEASE keep banning jobs outsourcing.This country cannot afford to lose any more jobs.Our people are suffering huge hardships because of lack of jobs. ”

If you haven’t seen Ted Strickland get tough, then get prepared. This is only the start.

Do not be fooled by his normal, relaxed, soft-spoken, wise-old-minister personality. This guy can be one tough son of a bitch when someone pisses him off. And nothing pisses Ted off more than some assholes trying to come in and fuck with hard working Ohioans.

Ted Strickland spent his entire life, in and out of politics, trying to help Ohioans while John Kasich has done nothing but try to further his own self interest, often at the expense of Ohioans.

I’m not going to sit here and try to spin the poll numbers or blow sunshine up your ass by telling you it isn’t a bad year for Democrats. But I will ask you to please read Ted’s letter below and then try to tell me that Democrats don’t have the balls to stand up for our State, for our workers or for our jobs…

September 21, 2010

The Honorable Ron Kirk
Office of the United States Trade Representative
600 17th Street NW
Washington, DC 20508

Dear Ambassador Kirk:

I write today because I understand that this week at the U.S.-India Trade Policy Forum in Washington, Indian officials intend to object to my actions to insource jobs when the State of Ohio purchases services. The issue may also come up when India’s Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao sits down this week with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in advance of President Obama’s November visit to India.

Therefore, I want to take this opportunity to very clearly state the nature and purpose of Ohio’s policy. My Executive Order prohibits any State of Ohio cabinet agency, board, or commission from signing a contract that uses funds it controls to purchase services outsourced to other countries. Quite frankly, in my view, there is no need to go across the globe to buy services that can be readily provided in Ohio or in the United States.

While they have objected to my actions, Indian officials have admitted they do not have a case in the World Trade Organization because my Executive Order does not violate any trade agreement with them.

We make things in Ohio. So we are very well aware of the importance of trade and we highly value our trading partners. After suffering the full brunt of the global recession, Ohio now leads the 50 states in manufacturing job growth and has the sixth-fastest growing economy in the U.S. Of course, exports have helped fuel that growth. Ohio firms sold $381 million in goods, principally machinery, aircraft, and medical equipment, to Indian markets last year. We have also successfully worked with Indian firms to grow their businesses within the United States. In fact, Tata Consultancy Services built its North American headquarters right here in Ohio.

Ohio is open for business. We believe in fair trade here, and we know that both our countries benefit from it. But let me say this as well — no one in India, or anywhere else, is going to tell the citizens of Ohio where we can create jobs or how we can spend our resources. I hope this statement of our position is helpful to you as you talk with Indian officials this week.


Ted Strickland