Friday, July 4, 2008


The STARK COUNTY POLITICAL REPORT (The Report) has learned that Lawrence Township trustee Mike Stevens is still considering a "write-in" race against Democrat nominee Celeste DeHoff (to whom Stevens narrowly lost to in the March Democratic primary) and Republican Todd Snitchler in the November general election.

Speaking of campaigns. The Report attended the Uniontown Business Association's monthly meeting on June 30th to hear Snitchler make a presentation on the Lake Development Corporation (a nonprofit designed to generate new business in Lake Township [Snitchler's home community].

Three things stood out in Snitchler's presentation. First, he never mentioned he was the Republican nominee for Ohio House District 50 (county party chair Matthews nor the Ohio Republican Ohio House caucus will not be happy to hear this news; second, he waffled on whether or not the Lake Development Corporation is part of the Lake Chamber of Commerce; and, third he claimed that the Lake Development Corporation has no money.

The Report's presence may have caused the waffling on the Lake Chamber of Commerce connection. Snitchler has to know that The Report has dubbed him as the chamber of commerce candidate because he gives every indication that he is intoxicated with the idea that the chamber movement is way out of Ohio's economic doldrums. Moreover, he has to know The Report highly critical of the Republican Party/Ohio Chamber of Commerce connection (including local chambers). The Report points to the fact that the Republicans have been in charge of Ohio's government for nearly two decades and the "joined at the hip" relationship with the chamber has gotten Ohio nowhere. If fact, Ohio has slipped into economic oblivion losing tens of thousands of jobs.

Snitchler has latched onto a "personal public relations officer." Ron Starkey, a former Hartville councilman, wrote a letter to the editor of The Repository comparing Snitchler to the recently deceased Tim Russert (a first-rate political analyst) on values (a familiar Republican gambit).

Did Snitichler put Stark up to this? No one questions Snitchler's or DeHoff's devotion to "faith, family and country." Voters do question whether either one has what it takes to help the governor "turnaround Ohio" (and for locals, Stark County) on the economic front.

Snitchler's Lake Development Corporation has been around for three years. All he could say on June 30, 2008 that it has no money to do development with - but - he's working on that.

One final point. Does anyone think that a person who has wrapped himself in a chamber of commerce blanket and its indistinguishable relationship with the Republican Party at all levels, has got what it takes to be bipartisan. Moreover, Snitchler cheerleader Starkey must be a very politically naive person. Does he really think that as a rookie representative that Snitchler will be permitted by the Republican caucus to become a bipartisan leader?

Question: Is a chamber of commerce approach to solving the economic problems of Ohio/Stark County a viable solution?

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