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Saturday, December 27, 2008

DISCUSSION: HOW RESPONSIVE, LEADERSHIP CAPABLE ARE STARK COUNTY LEGISLATORS?

The Repository Editorial Board hit the nail on the head with its December 24th piece, "Don't blame the sheriff."

The most poignant observation of the editors is this line: (speaking of the retire/rehire of Sheriff Swanson and Apellate Judge William B. Hoffman) "Any beef shouldn’t be with the judge and sheriff. If you don’t like the law, it’s time to take it up with the Ohio Legislature."

The problem is that Stark County's legislators ARE NOT responsive to the desires of Stark Countians by and large and basically congeal with their respective cacuses even when the interests of Stark County are adverse to caucus interests.

Kirk Schuring (Republican - Ohio's 29th Senate) has told the STARK COUNTY POLITICAL REPORT (The Report) that he is not a "cookie cutter" Republican. But The Report asks for more than a self-serving declaration. To quote Burger King Clara: "Where's the beef" to make the assertion more than that - a mere assertion?

The Report personally likes Schuring, but is hard pressed to name one legislative success he has had in his 14 years or so in the Legislature that has had a profound positive effect on Stark County.

Scott Oelslager (Republican - 51st Ohio House) has an equally dismal record. Everyone likes Scott and that's fine. But what has he done to move Stark forward? He has had success with his "open records" legislation. However, most Stark Countians just glaze over when the hear this achievement trumpeted. This is not a "bread and butter" issue which Stark Countians ardently desire (i.e. creating a productive economic climate in Ohio and derivatively to Stark County, fixing Ohio's school funding problem and derivatively Stark County's, et cetera).

Stephen Slesnick (Democrat - 52nd Ohio House) shows every indication of being a stodgy business oriented type who supports solutions that haven't work and therefore Ohio (and Stark County) keeps getting the same old "bad" results.

Representative-elect Todd Snitchler. Ditto the Slesnick remark but with the added burden of being an Ohio Chamber of Commerce "Kook Aid" drinker who is very unlikely to being an innovative, creative legislator that Ohio and Stark County so desperately needs.

For its part, The Repository editorial board points to the Legislature but has never named names when it comes to Stark County legislators as bearing any part of the responsibility for Ohio's deficient legislature.

It seems as if the Stark County legislative delegation is some sort of gentlemen's club that does not want to offend anyone in Columbus and certainly not Stark County.

Can you imagine any of the aforementioned antagonizing the sheriff and Judge Hoffman types (which The Report can assure readers - there are more in the brink of replication the Swanson/Hoffman move), by introducing corrective legislation.

The Report says there is no chance for any of Stark's legislators to initiate such legislation.

While The Rep's editors do "hit the nail on the head," they have been remiss in naming Stark County names with specific legislative agenda failures. With The Rep editors, it is always someone else, their generalities never hits home to the Stark County legislative delegation.

The Report believes The Rep's editors have a "favored-son" relationship with all the elected Statehouse Stark County representatives and therefore are incapable to criticizing their lackluster performance in a repetitive and consistent manner.

Stark Countians know that The Rep editors can get behind a politician they like - in a repetitive and consistent manner (e.g. Janet Creighton Weir).

How about the flipside? When the job isn't get done, why are these editors beating the drum for them to get productive - in specific - or, promise to weigh-in on the becoming unelected?

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Interesting discussion. I agree with most, if not all of your legislative observations. I also find it VERY interesting that the Repository editorial staff will promote/endorse EVERY tax increase in EVERY political jurisdiction without fail. This is curious as they seem to love to spend the electorate's money without any accountability. Furthermore, I've seen a increasing and ongoing attempt to "censor" comments on their own web site.

Apparently Jeff Gauger and staff don't truly believe in the 1st amendment. Only, when it's self serving.

Marley Greiner said...

OK, this is an old entry, but I just have to comment. I have been singularly unimpressed with Slesnick. Last year I lobbyed for a bill that was heard 4 times by the Health Committee on which he sits. I missed the first hearing, but attended the rest. He stuck around long enough for roll call and then walked out as soon as he made his presence known, and never returned. I've been attending hearings for decades, and I'm used to people walking in and out and not showing, but this struck me as excessive.