Tom Petty’s “Won’t Back Down” must be the official campaign theme song for the Strickland-Brown campaign.  Yet, again, Strickland enters to it.

Strickland starts off with former OSU defensive back “Wrong Way” Jim Marshall:

“For four years, we’ve invested in our people.  For four years, we’ve worked to develop jobs that cannot be outsourced.  We’ve moved Ohio for a solid foundation that will support our great middle class.”

“Like Jim Marshall, it doesn’t matter how fast [John Kasich] moves, he wants to move us in the wrong direction.”

Strickland says we made Ohio on of the first in the nation to pass a jobs bill that developed wind and solar and energy.  Strickland claims his alternative energy portfolio mandate which will force utilities to innovate, bring rates lower, and creates jobs.  Renewable and advance energy projects, Ohio now ranks first.

Invested in logistics and infrastructure.  In Indiana they cut $300 million in their school budgets,  Hawaii cut out Fridays, in Ohio we raised school funding 5.5% in the last budget.

One of the leading nonpartisan education reform groups has called Strickland’s school funding reform he best in the nation.  More Ohioans are graduating from college than when Strickland took office.

For seniors, Strickland fought for an expansion of the homestead exemption that allows seniors to keep their homes with property tax relief.  For veterans, Ohio receives over a $1 billion more for state benefits from the federal government than in 2006.  Strickland instituted G.I. Promise which allows Ohio veterans to attend Ohio college tuition-free.  “Heroes are welcome in Ohio.”

Strickland talks about how his family lost their family home from a flood, foreclosure, and then a fire.

Pivots from his humble upbringing to Kasich’s record.  How Kasich fought against the Earned Income Tax credit.  Voted to cut food stamps and aid to children.  Reagan called it the greatest pro-family program in the history.  Kasich told he’d walk over hot coals to end these programs.

Congressman Kasich, who’s side are you on?  In the 1990s, there was a tax loophole that allowed billionaires who could renounce their citizenship simply to avoid taxes.  Kasich voted to allow the loophole continue.  Kasich voted to allow rich people to renounce their citizenship simply to avoid taxes.  He fought it four times.  It’s not like he didn’t have time to think about this.

While he was walking over hot coals to take away tax credits for minimum wage workers, he wouldn’t lift a finger to stop millionaires to avoid paying taxes.

Talks again about Kasich’s supporting for NAFTA and free trade.  Opposed worker retraining programs for workers who lost their jobs as a result of the trade deals he supported.

Congressman Kasich proposed cutting $7 billion in cuts for veterans programs.  Cutting programs for veterans with head wounds and veterans who couldn’t care for themselves.

The Appalachian Regional Commission seeks to improve the lives of Appalachian and to support economic development.  He proposed abolishing it because the people of Appalachia aren’t “deserving of special federal protection.”

“Congressman Kasich, you keep fighting for Wall Street.  I’ll keep fighting for Ohio.”

The proposal to repeal the income tax is as radically, reckless, and wrong as his congressional record.  Apparently, John Kasich believes in “Tooth Fairy” economics.  514 days ago, Kasich said he’d tell us how he’d pay for it when he’s ready.  Congressman, it’s time to put your pencil down.

Ohioans deserve to know how much Kasich potential gains from his own tax plan as middle class Ohioans see their property and sales tax increase with less benefits.

Compares Ohio’s recovery from that of Nevada and Florida.  Pew Center of the States ranks Ohio ahead of most States in fiscal health.  Nevada and Florida lead the nation as States in fiscal peril.

The speech makes one more mention of the chicken shack controversy caused by Kasich’s campaign spokesman.  Mocks Kasich for saying the State is in a death spiral and admonishes Kasich for counting Ohio out.

It was a powerful speech that frames this race precisely as the Strickland campaign wants the race to be viewed and virtually opposite from how the Kasich campaign wants it to be.  The speech really was about an equal comparison of Strickland’s record as Governor to Kasich’s record in Congress.  The Kasich campaign and the Carpetblogger will predictably decry the speech as “smearing” Kasich when all it did was talk about the things John Kasich proposed in Congress.  They’ll then return fire with blasting “Strickland’s record” which is nothing more than blaming Strickland for not sheltering Ohio from a global economic meltdown that is still in a shaky recovery phase of.

I think Kasich’s record and his inability to explain his own tax plan and how to pay for it will be more productive avenues of attack for the rest of the summer. Budget issues don’t sound appealing, but when you frame it as opportunity costs such as Kasich’s tax plans increasing property taxes while providing less for schools, law enforcement, and economic development, it’ll get some traction.