Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Dems Just Can't Compete on
Ohio Corruption Playing Field

There is something about this small story in the many Ohio scandals that seems very telling.

The 2002 Lucas County Commissioner's race featured Sandy Isenberg (Dem) vs. Maggie Thurber (Rep) in which Isenberg was the odds on favorite until it was learned "she accepted a free roof on her condo from a local developer who had appeared before her for a vote on the Lucas County Plan Commission." Not good of course but Thurber needed to capitalize on it. She didn't have the funds to pay for a big ad buy to expose Isenberg's apparent graft. So in steps Noe money.

Thurber got $40,000 to finance the TV ad buy from
GOP fund-raiser Tom Noe who is at the center of numerous scandals in Ohio. With the tainted money Ms. Thurber then ' seized on the roof deal, and it became the subject of a catchy television ad". In fact "The money flowed to the Thurber campaign because Ms. Thurber's race against Ms. Isenberg was the focal point of the 2002 election season in Lucas County" once Isenberg was seen as vulnerable. It was the turning point in the race and Thurber won.

So let's compare...... the Dem Isenberg got a roof (let's say $10,000) and the Rep Thurber got $40,000 of tainted Noe money. ($87k in all from the party). In a weird Faustian way it just isn't fair now is it. Thurber had the benefit of this huge Repug illegal money machine and all Isenberg had was a lousy roof deal (she ended up paying for the roof herself by the way).

From a story like this people get cynical and say so what, they are all corrupt. OK if that's where we are, then let's look that cycnism right in the face. We need to admit the crazy disproportionality that's going on here. It'd David vs. Goliath in the money game.
How's a Dem to compete?????? Be more massive and efficiently corrupt?
  • Do we blame the Dems for being the apparent rank amateurs they are when it comes to corruption?
  • Do we say if all you're willing to risk is a lousy roof then you deserve to be beat?
  • If all you got is 20th century 'ol boss under the table deals and aren't thinking 21st century hi-tech and national then that's your own damn fault?

Because if we are not going to clean up the whole mess and raze this corrupt playing field then leveling it for the Dems is the answer....take off the gloves and abolish campaign finance laws so Dems can have a fair fight. Let them go to school on Repug fund raising tactics. That's where we stand right now. Is that really where we want to be? From the lack of outrage and media coverage I guess so.

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