Any candidate will tell you that the ultimate endorsement is for supporters: (1) to give money, and (2) go out and do door-to-door campaigning.
While the SCPR does not know that viral YouTube phenom Phil Davison (Republican - Minerva councilman) will be going door-to-door for Meagan Todaro Kirchner in her quest to unseat, perhaps, Stark County's most powerful Democrat (Johnnie A. Maier, Jr), he has graced her with a campaign contribution.
Davison could be the "ace up her sleeve" that Kirchner needs to take out the incumbent Massillon clerk of courts.
Kirchner's main problem in Massillon is name-ID compared to Maier. A second considerable problem is that she is a committed Republican running in a Democratic town.
In 2005, Maier administered a political smashing to the then Meagan Todaro:
An artfully crafted campaign using Davison as an attention-getter could put her in play (ID-wise) against the former Stark County Democratic Party chairman who has rubbed shoulder with the likes of former Governor Ted Strickland and Preasident Bill Clinton.
On the party ID front she needs to convince defeated incumbent Mayor Francis H. Cicchinelli, Jr to come out full force for her this race. Cicchinell's wife - Joy - as a proxy for the mayor - contributed to Todaro-Kirchner's campaign as witness her post-primary campaign finance report:
It appears that Cicchinelli and political friends are prepared to put all their eggs in the Todaro-Kirchner/Maier campaign and concede to Kathy Catazaro-Perry the mayoralty over Republican candidate Lee Brunckner.
Together with his spouse's proxy contribution, Cicchenilli's chief administrator (Safety-Services Director Mike Loudiana) also made a contribution to Todaro-Kirchner.
If Todaro-Kirchner can package her assets effectively (Davison and Cicchinelli et al), she can show why Maier took great offense for her having run against him in 2005. Yours truly remembers the outrage that Maier burst out into when the topic of his having had opposition came up at a political event post-November 2005 election.
His outburst was a real eye opener to yours truly. Wow! The man defeats his opponent by nearly 40 percentage points and he's bitter about having had an opponent?
The Report has always known that Maier is a power politician. His political idol is the now deceased (2006) Vern Riffe who served has Ohio's longest serving Speaker of the House (1975 - 1994). In a phrase Riffe and his disciple Maier was/is "might makes right" politicos.
Other than staffing the Massillon clerk of courts office with a number of political friends (e.g. Shane Jackson who is the son of former Stark County commissioner Gayle Jackson and who is paid more than the mayor of Massillon), it appears that Maier runs the clerk of courts in an effective fashion.
With this office operation track record, why should Maier not be returned as clerk of courts?
Answer: to get some political balance in Massillon government.
Maier and his allies (with the near certain election as protege Kathy Catazao-Perry as mayor of Massillon) are on the cusp of taking over the reins of political power for all of Massillon.
The SCPR thinks this should be a frightening prospect for Massillonians.
Remember his outrage of the temerity of someone running against him and remember what his school of politics (power politics) is.
As The Report sees it, a defeat of Maier would send a message to Maier and those who would mimic his political style that Stark Countians are not into political power. Over the long haul political power disciples are the ones who - because they come to believe they are above accountabilty - bring government into disrepute with the electorate.
The defeat of Cicchinelli has left Massillon with out a "check and balance" political force and, in the view of the SCPR, Massillonians would be doing themselves good by electing Meagan Todaro-Kirchner as their next clerk of courts.
The Report believes Massillonians are wise enough to make this best choice for themselves.
However, Todaro-Kirchner will have to show she has the political skills needed to use every asset she has - wringing out every ounce of value - in order to take down Maier.
The clerk of courts function is pretty much pro forma and there should be no reason that Todaro-Kirchner cannot match the operational qualities that the Massillon clerk's office has under Maier.
The "value-added" that she must commit to is to take the political factor (i.e. hiring political connected persons) out of the clerks office. These positions are paid for by Massillon's taxpayers. A clerk of courts should endeavor to hire from the citizenry-at-large the best qualified person. Not some politically connected person who may or may not be able to effectively and efficiently serve the public.
The odds are heavily against Todaro-Kirchner defeating Maier.
But the times for this kind of change seem to be riper in 2011 than any other time that Maier has run for this office.
Are Todaro-Kirchner and her supporters in the Massillon/Stark County Republican Party capable of pulling off what would be a stunning political upset?