The 3C passenger rail was treated by the Ohio media has a highly unpopular proposal by the Strickland Administration. However, my quick research found only these three public opinion polls on the issue
* The Ohio Poll’s likely voter model last year was widely criticized throughout the year for overweighing the Republican vote and underweighing the Democratic vote. Eventually, they adjusted their models and after that adjustment still got a result that predicted a margin of victory for Kasich double what he actually got.
In fact, if you look at the crosstabs of the January Ohio Poll, it showed that Democrats supported the 3C 52% to 41% and Independents 56% to 35% while Republicans opposed it 63% to 32%. The only way, then, the Ohio Poll could get the result they did is if their sample gave the projected Republican vote too much weight at the expense of the Democratic vote. It’s head-to-head matchup numbers between Strickland and Kasich further support this.
Regardless, those were the numbers. Shortly before the election, the 3C plan had just shy of a majority of registered voters opposed, but with the number of supporters just a little bit behind. In the most recent Quinnipiac Poll, Ohioans were mostly split on Kasich’s decision to kill the 3C with only 48% supporting it and 42% opposing it. So in terms of public opinion, it appears a plurality opposed it but with support for it narrowly behind.
And yet, the way the Ohio media reported it, you’d think 3C was Strickland plan to randomly taser puppies and four-year-olds.
Here’s what the Quinnipiac Poll—the only poll so far—has found are registered voters’ attitudes to several of Governor Kasich’s and the legislative Republican caucus’ pet issues this year:
|Privatizing the turnpike||30%||51%|
|Privatizing State prisons||33%||51%|
|Eliminating/restriction collective bargaining||34%||51%|
|Repealing the estate tax||36%||51%|
It should be noted that only 39% of Republicans support privatizing the Ohio Turnpike; less than half support privatizing prisons; only half support collective bargaining reform! The only things that Quinnipiac found that a majority of Republicans supported in John Kasich’s agenda was killing the 3C and attempting to repeal the estate tax. That’s it!
Republicans don’t even widely support John Kasich’s agenda of privatization and war against public unions!
And yet, despite all the columns and editorials over 3C, we’ve seen virtual silence from Ohio’s newspapers on the “debate” about JobsOhio. The Dispatch practically tripped over itself to rush their endorsement of it. And today, the Akron Beacon Journal criticized it over the lack of transparency (leaving the issue of does this thing ever work on a statewide level completely unchallenged!)
Yesterday, I stood before a legislative committee of twenty House Republicans and all but dared them to debate me on the merits of private entities like JobsOhio. I told them that nearly half the States who have done this are in the Top FIVE states in the nation right now for unemployment. No response.
The only thing any of them expressed any interest in doing is probing my work history with Ted Strickland. And why? Because we all know what happened the last time one of them tried to debate the merits of JobsOhio with me.
After I testified, here’s what the Vice-Chairman of the Committee said as to why he was voting to recommend the JobsOhio bill be passed by the full House:
“We need to take a step, even though there are risks involved.”—State Rep. John Carey (R-Wellston).
Even he recognizes that JobsOhio is a risky plan. But even that’s too generous of a term for JobsOhio. It’s risk without reward. Show me the evidence where this has worked before you railroad this into Ohio law. And tell me why the same majority of Ohioans who opposed all the other privatization plans Kasich is pursuing would support this?
Where is the same media that went nuts over a passenger rail system that Ohioans were nearly split over now that there’s an issue they likely overwhelmingly oppose?