Wanted to talk about how the union-busting campaign in Ohio felt on the ground. I could have done it prior to this but I’m superstitious. For whatever reason I believe that reckless pre-election punditry on my part ensures a loss.
Conservatives ran a traditional divide and conquer campaign, they ran it at thirty thousand feet, and they lied about the central issue in the campaign.
Conservatives attempted to divide Ohio along two lines: the public versus public sector unions, and private sector unions versus public sector unions.
They tried to cleave off private sector unions because there’s a dirty little (open) secret in my part of Ohio, and it’s that many private sector union members vote for Republicans. Republicans would like to continue to win statewide races in Ohio, so they’d like to continue to bash unions while winking and nodding to the private sector union members who vote for them in counties like mine.
It didn’t work. Private sector union members were 100% on-board. There was no discernable division between the two groups. That’s somewhat remarkable, because prior to Governor Kasich, there actually was a divide between, say, local public school teachers and local Teamsters. That’s why Republicans saw an opening. Because it was there. Those two groups have very little in common. I went to a phone bank yesterday and last night where retired teachers were making canvassing calls alongside 30 year old men in work clothes. Dividing private sector unions and public sector unions failed.
Conservatives ran a traditional divide and conquer campaign, and they ran it exclusively at 30,000 feet. It wasn’t just help from Liz Cheney and national conservative groups, it was all Liz Cheney and national conservative groups. There was no organization at all in this county, no observable signs of life from any actual local Republican activist. It’s a huge advantage for Democrats, because we’ve been organized and energized since Kasich opened his mouth and started insulting our friends and neighbors, and we’ve been organized in a practical, tangible, grim and determined way that appeals to me. We’ve been very, very busy. I don’t know what they’ve been doing on the other side, because we haven’t had time to look deeply into The Conservative Soul lately, thank God.
The central issue in the campaign wasn’t health insurance, and it wasn’t pensions, and it wasn’t wages. Republicans lied about that, both by continuing to insist that it was about those things, and then lying about those things specifically.
Here’s a quote from a Republican who gets it:
Republicans who watched the campaign on the union measure said it was doomed from the start. The law was a frontal assault on one of the most sacred principles for Democrats: the right of organized labor to collectively bargain. Defeating the repeal campaign would have required near-universal Republican support, which was not there because some registered Republicans opposed the law. “This really is a core value, and the bill was out of step with that value,” said one Republican strategist, who asked to remain anonymous because he did not want to be seen as criticizing his party’s position.
Collective bargaining stands for the idea that your boss has to sit down with you and negotiate. That’s it. That’s all it means. It doesn’t mean you get a great pension and it doesn’t mean you pay 0% or 10% or 15% towards health insurance, because those things are not “collective bargaining”, those things are terms that can be and are negotiated when your boss has to sit down with you. People here know this, and it doesn’t matter how much direct mail Liz Cheney sends them that says otherwise. The terms aren’t the main issue. The fact that workers have the power to negotiate at all is the main issue.
Collective bargaining stands for the idea that your boss has to sit down with you and negotiate. That’s it, but that’s huge. What the people I spoke to and listened to since March heard from Republicans was this: “we don’t have to sit down with you at all, and we won’t”. That is a profound loss, an insult that cuts deep, and I’m not talking about bitching about health insurance premiums. People don’t tear up when they’re talking about 15% towards health insurance premiums. It’s dignity, it’s control, and it’s respect, both for public employees and for the work that they do.
Collective bargaining isn’t a core value “for Democrats”. It’s a core value for human beings. It says that the person or entity that controls nearly all of your waking hours has to sit at the same level with you and deal with you as an equal, if only once a year, or once every five years.
That’s damn near poetry, that is.
Congrats for all your hard work. I’m sad to hear that private unions were voting GOP. Hope they have permanently woken up.
Kay, you’re the jewel in the BJ crown. Many thanks.
Their rejection of collective bargaining is from the same seed as their rejection of the compromise necessary for democracy. The GOP is a giant id that seeks to remove all barriers to the singular expression of that id — domination of other and supremacy of self.
I don’t understand how Republicans can be so stupid about things like this. When the full truth of Walker’s agenda in Wisconsin became widely known I expected outrage from Democrats and public unions. What I didn’t expect was an older client who I knew was a Republican (and possibly leaning toward the Tea Bagging side of the fence) to be full on frothing at the mouth in rage about it. “You can’t take away a person’s right to negotiate,” he said, over and over again, as if he couldn’t believe it.
So I am glad today about the results of last night and feeling very positive and energized about the future. Thanks, Kay, for your work and your reporting.
Kay, congrats to you and all your fellow activists. I was breathlessly watching the TPM scoreboard all evening to enjoy your huge margin of victory. Ohio rocks!
Ensures a loss, unless you bought election insurance.
Villago Delenda Est
This explains, in a nutshell, why the vile Cheney creature opposes collective bargaining.
It says that the person or entity that controls nearly all of your waking hours has to sit at the same level with you and deal with you as an equal
Conservatives would have everyone believe that a giant corporation and an individual worker are equals, but they are almost always very unequal. The ability of workers to form unions goes a long way towards righting the balance between the two. Galbraith talked about the importance of “countervailing powers” in American Capitalism (which is rather dated at this point, but still interesting).
@eric: They are drones of the Anti-Life Equation.
Balloon Juice has obviously been an exception, but I like No More Mr. Nice Blog’s observation on last nights elections. Something that needed to be said.
Yesterday, it was “thank you for your work, and good luck”. Today, let me revise that to “thank you for all the work you did, and congratulations for a job well done”.
The Ancient Randonneur
Bravo! Thanks to you and everyone who worked for the defeat of this horrible legislation. Unions played a large role in building this country’s middle class and are just as important today as they were in the last century.
Well done, Ohio. On to 2012!
Congratulations, Kay! Wonderful post.
Congratulations Kay. I hope someone took a picture of the big smile on your face when returns started coming in. If so, you need to share it.
how come nothing about the elections from Sully?
yes, I just checked. one little blurb about Personhood 26 from Mississippi and that’s it?
I for one hope the vile Cheney creature continues to “help” the right-wing cause as she did in Ohio because I am detecting a Midas touch of fail about her.
Sully despises workers.
Villago Delenda Est
Oh, and yes, way to go, Kay! A tremendous night for you and your fellow Ohio activists who got the job done!
@rikryah: Leave Sully alone! He needs to do a few bong hits before digesting last night’s results. Maybe he will nominate the voters of Ohio for a Moore Award or something.
Actually, what it means is that your boss can’t sit down with only you, and then only your coworker, and then only your other coworker, and lowball each of you, and then forbid all of you to discuss compensation with each other in any meaningful way, with a threat of losing your job if you do. (I work in an industry where that’s always been the case, and unionization is not a reasonable possibility in the near future, dammit.)
Congratulations to Kay and all the folks in Ohio who kicked some coccyx, as well as the ones in Mississippi who beat their atrocity of a proposition.
KS in MA
Congratulations, Kay, and thank you!!!
I always love reading your posts but this is the first time you moved me to tears. Then again, I’m a little emotional this morning, having awakened to find that all the results from last night were not a dream! I haven’t been around B-J in months because I’ve been too damn despondent about the state of affairs everywhere in this country and was just about convinced that there was nothing we could do to keep the Republicans from slowly but surely controlling everything. I have never been so glad to be proven wrong.
I am not nearly as sanguine as most of the other posts here. The Yes campaign was extremely terrible and they still got 40% of the vote.
The Mississippi 26 campaign is a lot more encouraging, since something that was expected to win in a walk, lost by almost the same margin that the Ohio No on 2 campaign won by. Both votes suggest there is 40% of the electorate that will always vote for the GOP issue. Thus any GOP candidate starts out with that vote locked in.
On the third hand, the Miss Voter ID law passed by about 62-38, which probably means that VOTER ID is a long term lost cause to turn around. How costly? We shall see.
I’m surprised at the speed at which Obama issued his congratulatory message, and I bet the Beltway elite is practically apoplectic about it. I mean, it’s so divisive and partisan! Doesn’t he know that unions are quaint and obsolete? It might hurt poor John Kasich’s fee fees! How dare a Democratic president stand up for working people! The horror of it! Such a partisan message at a time when we should be bipartisan! How could he be so mean? The elite are probably all clutching their pearls now as we speak. Aunt Pittypat probably fainted dead away!
You know, it’s almost even less than that. It’s the idea that when your boss sits down to negotiate with you, he’s obligated to follow the agreement. Unions are effectively a product of contract law. And anti-union bills are just means of letting management cheat its way out of a signed contract.
The whole “no striking / no negotiating / no blah blah blah” is legislative cover to let lower level managers throw up their hands and say they’re helpless to bargain. All utter horseshit. Republicans want to break legally binding business contracts without repercussions. That’s all it really boils down to.
Congratulations, Kay! And Congratulations to all the folks in Ohio who worked so hard. Thank you all so much for your hard work and showing that it can be done.
I can’t wait to watch the GOP Presidential candidate try to campaign in Ohio with Governor Kasich. Heh.
a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q)
Thanks for the insightful (as always) post and for all your hard work, Kay.
@Librarian: MoU is dissing unions in his NYT column this morning.
Meanwhile, back at the front
Tally fucking Ho!!
Thanks. I’ll fix it.
Your hard work paid off!
I am so happy for Ohio and the entire country because of the work you and all the others in We Are Ohio did to defeat this abomination.
With the exception of a few, not-really-as-bad-as-you-might-have-thought blips, Democrats and their allies had a big, big night last night. Now, if we can keep this positive momentum going for another 12 months, it’s possible we might have a reprise of Nancy SMASH!
Kudos to you, Kay and your fellow Buckeyes for tremendous work! Congratulations!
You don’t say. A pro-choice measure winning by something like 60-40 IN THE DEEP SOUTH??? To me, that’s about as out of the blue and counterintuitive as if the Kasich union-busting measure had passed by a similar margin in the Rust Belt.
Someone on another thread offered the best explanation for it by theorizing that “once out of the watchful eye of their husbands and pastors, a lot of conservative Christian women voted for their and their daughters’ interests.” And I’ll bet it’s not all women, also.
Congrats Kay. A great asswhoop.
It’s great for Sherrod Brown too Stuck.
He was a liberal populist before it was fashionable. It’s just the perfect environment for that Senator, and, unlike Romney, Brown doesn’t have to invent a persona.
@gbear: That’s why the MSM is an albatross. Even when it is online.
@Villago Delenda Est:
This could be edited into a pretty effective bumper sticker.
Kay-congrats! I have a question–
Is our national democrats learning?
Paul in KY
Great work, Kay. Congratulations!
Romney should be electoral poison in OH in the current pol atmosphere, with his past of corporate raiding, costing people’s jobs, including union ones, and like others said, well done, with your activism, kay!!
Kay, speaking as an Ohio public employee (though unfortunately in a non-union position)- from the bottom of my heart, thank you for your hard work.
@dmsilev: “Yesterday, it was “thank you for your work, and good luck”. Today, let me revise that to “thank you for all the work you did, and congratulations for a job well done””
I second this, and add that you shouldn’t apologize for a moment of triumph.
Celebrate the wins! Proclaim them so that people know that winning is possible.
I’m sure a few college guys and young men sat down and did the math on the question “Do I want to wear a condom? Or would I prefer my girlfriend/fiance/wife be on the pill? Hmmm…”
So nice to wake up to today’s news! Thanks Kay for all the work you did to make this happen!
Kay, congratulations for all your hard work and for sharing some of your experiences with us. Also, reading this section:
crystallized OWS perfectly for me. These sentiments reflect a big part of the lack of control and loss felt by the 99%.
Kay — Just wanted to add my thanks and congrats. You rock.
Two thoughts on last night’s events:
1: The vote in Ohio was not only a major win and a colossal humiliation for Kasich (missing safety at Faux News, John?), but for all we know, the GOP just lost Ohio for 2012 last night. Every GOP Presidential hopeful backed this, even Romney (after he got shamed into it) and it’ll be wrapped around their neck like an anvil. Add in that the Dems have the momentum and the ground organization, along with Kasich’s unpopularity and it could get real ugly for the GOP in Ohio next November.
2: I must admit, I was stunned that the Every Sperm is Sacred amendment was beaten in Mississippi by that big a margin. And yet the people behind it are going to try to get it on the ballot in six more states next year. I looked at the list of states and nearly spit up. California? Washington? Florida? Folks, if you get beaten that badly in Mississippi, for God’s sake, what chance do you think you have in those states? Give it up.
I agree. I don’t know why this gets treated in a such a wonky way. We’re talking about really profound things: what is work worth, what are people worth, and on and on.
It’s not about health insurance, for God’s sake.
Not only is this a great win, but it looks a lot like one side is already organized and ready to go for 2012 in this key swing state and the other is not. Kudos to Kay!
kay, congrats to you and all the people on the ground in ohio that helped make this possible
I have been lurking for quite a while, but Kay, your post is so eloquent and true that I had to step out of the shadows and thank you: for expressing the importance of collective bargaining, and for putting in so many hours on such an important issue. As a lifetime resident of Pennsylvania, I am inspired and encouraged by the example of Ohio, and hope to do my part here.
Wonderful work, Kay. Congratulations.
The results also show the utter irrelevance of newspaper endorsements. Both the Cleveland Plainly Republican and the Columbus Distort strongly endorsed Issue 2, but it went down by 67% in Cuyahoga and 64% in Franklin counties. Way to alienate your subscriber base, guys.
@Chris: It wasn’t a pro-choice win, it was a radical anti-choice defeat. An epic defeat, yes, but don’t confuse that with an actual expansion of the right to choose. MS is still probably not an easy place to access family planning.
I hope you are feeling wonderful this morning, Kay! i wish to add my voice to the chorus of congratulations for your honorable role in a collective triumph, spectacularly accomplished.
Your posts here are inspirational, not so much for their rhetoric as for their pragmatism. They lay out in clear prose what needs to be done and what it’s going to take to achieve it.
It comes as no surprise that rather than taking a breather today to savor last night’s sweet victory, you have chosen to take the time to write this righteous analysis to help us non-Ohioans better understand its local context and meaning.
Extrapolating from your observations, it underscores the fierce commitment and fortitude that will be necessary in each and every one of the fifty states next year to combat and defeat the radical right-wing campaigns of the American oligarchy.
Thanks very much for the lessons!
Lifelong average Joe Republican voters have hard wired loyalty to the party, daddy is alway right, and it takes a lot to blast some reality through that. They simply cannot believe the GOP’s agendas will do them any harm until some issue hits them up close and personal. You can point out facts and they dismiss them because if it comes from a liberal or “liberal” media, it can’t be true. I have a suspicion that some of my Republican friends and relatives still believe there was WMD in Iraq, no matter what even Bush admitted to later.
What is so puzzling to me is that they may be extremely disillusioned with the party on one or two issues but still keep voting Republican. Gluttons for punishment? Hope never dies? I”ll never understand the conservative mind.
@PeakVT: Right. Apparently there is exactly one clinic, and they’ve already passed everything they can that will hold up to Supreme Court precedent. If you believe, for example, that a rape victim should be able to get a morning-after pill, you couldn’t have voted for this abomination, and believing that hardly makes one pro-choice.
Better yet the PD is already up with an editorial essentially asking the Republican’s to pass parts of it again.
The voting rights referenda were important too. In Maine the Republican attack on voting got shelled – losing 60-40. In Mississippi it won by a similar margin.
This is a reflection of racial politics in the South, pure and simple. The MS vote was an affirmation that white southern voters wanted to make it harder for blacks to vote. I view it as a direct example for why the South still need to be scrutinized for racially discriminatory practices in elections. The fact that Maine rejected this is important too – because it indicates that voting rights are important to people in states without the block racial voting patterns of the Deep South.
I think that the attack on voting rights by the Republicans is both going to fail and going to backfire. There is a long bipartisan tradition of encouraging voting, and the moves that they’re making are so transparently bad-faith that they can’t be defended as anything but a power grab. Is there some group that thinks “I want fewer early voting days”, or “I want longer election day lines”?
I AM SHOUTING!
I AM SHOUTING!
I’m not getting your problem. The exclamation point appears for me whether I put it inside or outside the html code.
I’m utterly unsurprised. The Cain story is about sex. WOOHOO! The collective bargaining story is proof that Americans actually give a damn about policy. That’s poison to modern journalism.
that and this
It says that the
person or entityelected representative that controls nearly all of your waking hours has to sit at the same level with you and deal with you as an equal, if only once a year, or once every fivefour years.
maybe, finally people in this state will wake up and realize that the bankers and insurance CEOs in the state capital don’t really give much of a shit about them and they are NOT the state government just because they are in Columbus.
Kay, congratulations, and hats off to you for fighting the good fight. You and all your fellow activists and organizers deserve the thanks of not just the entire state of Ohio, but the entire nation for spearheading this pushback against the GOP war on unions.
Unions Are People.
@gf120581: The Mississippi thing? I think if they devised bills strictly about abortion limits they could win in too many states. The whole ‘every zygote is a person’ thing won’t work (as it didn’t twice in Colorado) because it goes too far.
When your anti abortion bills also illegalize many common birth control methods, invitro fertilization, and saving a woman from an ectopic pregnancy, only the most vile see the bill as positive. I suspect that is what the people voted against.
It isn’t over. The same folk have introduced the same bill in a half dozen states. I suspect they’ll have to see themselves lose most (hopefully all) of them before they learn they can’t go this far and expect to win a majority.
May I be the 57th or so in this thread to congratulate you and your colleagues, Kay! Well done, way to go, high fives,
terroristfist bumps to everyone!
(Not to mention, your writing on any topic is always a pleasure to read.)
wordpress collects them for its ritual human sacrifices. No one knows why.
btw, how did your republican voting cop friend vote on issue 2 ?
“Collective bargaining stands for the idea that your boss has to sit down with you and negotiate. That’s it, but that’s huge.”
Right on. I spend a lot of my professional life advising unions in negotiations, and even after almost two decades I’m still sometimes stunned by the power and beauty of not just the idea but the reality of labor being able to negotiate as equals with corporations about the conditions of work. It’s extends the ideal of democracy beyond a strictly political realm and such a wonderful, powerful pro-human idea. Which is why the Right hates it.
Congratulations! I am super happy that all your hard work paid off. It gave me a good dose of reality check (I hope that is not copyright infringement!) to realize the rest of the country is not as batshit conservative as the MSM would have us believe.
Thanks too for your analysis of the private vs. public union rapprochement in Ohio. I think this will hold true in the rest of the country as well. But most of all thanks for all the organizing work you did! This makes me feel so much better about our chances in ’12, despite all the voter suppression tricks the GOP are pulling out.
@FlipYrWhig: Hell Yes!
I was also thinking, Core Values for People. Or Core Values-For Our Children’s Sake. Or Human Beings, Human Values.
@kay: Yes, but as long as they can shriek about health insurance, they have an abstract issue they can beat to death. The reason the CNBC crowd doesn’t get (or is choosing not to “get”) OWS is that they can conveniently ignore the very fundamental elements of human nature, which you captured so eloquently in that paragraph.
At our most basic, most of us want simple things: to take care of ourselves and our families, to be compensated fairly for the work we do, and for people to be treated consistently. Which in no way impedes the entrepreneur or business titan. But, these expectations do assume that the entrepreneur or business titan must follow the same rules that we must. Which, as we know, does not currently happen.
Much love and thanks Kay for your work on this issue.
By not backing down, you all made it known that working people will not just be silent and allow themselves to be devalued.
I appreciate y’all!
Kay, I’ve been waiting for this post since returns started coming in last night. Bless you for your plain-ole, flat-out smart, hard work. And your generous and uplifting perspective.
Late to the party, but congrats Kay! Thank you for all the work you and your compadres put in to make this happen in your neck of the woods and throughout Ohio. Thank you for reporting from the front lines–your posts are inspirational and informative and did I mention inspirational?
Good on ya.
@gf120581: On the Mississippi thing, according to some things I’ve heard, one of the biggest factors was that both the doctors’ and nurses’ professional groups threw their weight against it. One of the the things they did was to have ads explaining clearly things like “ectopic pregnancies” and other medical conditions where abortion is necessary because the fetus is not viable and the mother could (and often does) die.
And BRAVO to Kay and all the Ohio activists!
IMO, Voter ID laws are a lost cause for Democrats. The issue is too subtle to fight in this soundbite-driven world. Long term, it might be better to just cede the issue and focus on efforts to get those disenfranchised voters IDs ‘by any means necessary’ in time for next year.
I rather like the image of a long line of young/poor/minority voters on a Tuesday morning, each holding up their brand new, 100% legally valid Voter-ID for all to see. “Need to see my ID? Here you go, ma’am.”
Nothing would piss off these cheating conservatives more.
Very proud of you Kay and of Ohio and of OFA. Thanks.
@efgoldman: Three exclaimation points = one !!!
@Judas Escargot: Indeed it would. However, I fear this is a start/continuation of a distraction strategy. If the democrats have to spend money on organizing just get people registered _and_ get a new voter ID, then they are not organizing something else that might be of more use.
It may also backfire, in that an organizing campaign for Voter ID might turn into a more widespread organization for other causes.
Yes. Contracts for thee and not for me.
The foreclosure mess is part of the same attitude: The banks lose the paperwork, violate the law by using MERS instead of legal records, completely screw up the contracts, and then insist that they’ve got a legal and moral right to kick people out of their homes (and keep the money they’ve paid so far) because the owner has violated the contract by falling behind on payments. Meanwhile the banks’ many violations of the same contract and the laws that govern it are ignored.
Contracts are for little people.
you rocked hard on this.
/salutes Kay with respect
People want to believe they’re in the majority; with the exception of extreme partisans they don’t want to stop their opponents from actually voting. The proof is in the way that, until recently, states of all political leanings were enacting measures to expand early voting, make registration easier, and so on. The Republican push to zap voting rights is a move borne out of desperation, not strength, and I disagree that they’re “winning” with this.
The Republicans have put together packages that make it a pain in the rear to vote, and this is the prybar to use on the voter ID laws. They’re coupled with making it harder to actually vote – longer lines, fewer early voting days, and so on. You may have trouble with the “show your ID” part alone, but it’s much easier to fight back against the entire (obvious) effort.
@gf120581: no wonder Flip Flopney was so reluctant to add this particular anvil to the tea party chain around his neck
Thanks, “A republican who gets it” We’re not all grifters.
Good work and congratulations. Ciao.
@jibeaux: stemming a tide has to start somewhere
Kay, this is an obvious point that needs repeating. CB is about the right to negotiate a contract, something that most employees, skilled or otherwise but almost unverisally the unskilled, lack without the leverage that a union can provide.
Congratulations kay (and to all of you Ohio folks).
This is a great democracy lesson — you just DON’T have to sit there and take it, this is the whole point to voting and it actually works. But only if you take the time to do it.
GOTV for 2012!
Belafon (formerly anonevent)
@Judas Escargot: Which is why some states have included in those ID laws rules that prevent organized drives to get people to get IDs.
That’s why the newspaper analysis drove me crazy.
They completely ignored the key issue, which is NOT whether public employees should pay or more or less for health insurance, but whether public employees should have some say in that.
Republicans almost got away with what they always get away with, which is framing issues in completely dishonest ways. Union contracts are all different. Yet Republicans and media kept repeating these ridiculous specific numbers : “should they pay 10% or 20%?” It didn’t even apply. It was the wrong question. So why did newspapers all adopt it? Why not come up with their own question? One that addresses the actual issue and has some connection to reality?
We can’t have “debates” on “issues” if half of us are making shit up.
Excellent job to all the Ohioans who worked on this campaign!
And this is why blogs and social media matter. There were lots of people linking and sharing stories about the progressive wins on FB last night and this morning.
And, gee, none of my 400 friends had linked to a single Cain story in the past 24 hours.
Alternate media won’t save us, but it does make a dent in the media noise machine.
Just a great, great post, Kay. Have already forwarded it to about 20 people.
thank you so much, Kay. you and everyone else in OHIO – YOU ALL ROCKED IT!!!!
And we’re still pretending that professional people and managers don’t negotiate pay packages, and they do. We’re still pretending that only lower level workers are paid a combination of wages and benefits. That’s not true. If you’re a private sector worker and you’re paid with a combination of wages, insurance and retirement, that’s a pay package. It’s ALL pay. It’s just three different forms of compensation.
I keep waiting for the Fox News analysis of a managers hourly rate, when we add wages and benefits and the “bonuses” that are distributed. They could do that. For some mysterious reason, they don’t. Why does this “hourly wage” analysis only apply to union members?
First, congratulations to you Kay, and all your counterparts who worked so hard to defeat this odious law. I think the margin by which SB 2 was defeated is even more significant then the outcome. Many union members still vote Republican, and therefore against their own interests. No doubt that is because they have bought into some part (or all) of the God, Guns and Gays agenda the Republican party has been spitting out for the past 30 plus years. The vote margin makes it clear that a number of these folks just got the wake-up call. Now the job will be to keep them in our camp not just through 2012, but permanently.
Just jumping in briefly to say thank you Kay for all your hard work in making this happen. And to all those who worked with you. This was a most heartening win. Restored a lot of hope for me.
This was just a great description of what collective bargaining was and why it’s important. Clear and passionate.
Sadly I came to a similar conclusion before reaching Judas’ post. I’d go a bit further, to having Dems and progressives really pushing the issue of getting the ID provided-to-voters-free codified effectively and into law in those states ASAP that now have retrograde ID statutes.
Maine says to us that it’s still worth fighting in a handful of very cohesive, good gov’t states. Maybe MN will hold firm, I don’t know – we anticipate a voter ID constitutional amendment next session, along with a “50% vote to cut taxes/66% vote to raise taxes” disaster. Ugh.
But in states like WI where it now appears to be against policy for a state worker to even tell a person that their non-drivers ID is free and available is verboten. That is utter, unpatriotic anti-democracy crap and has to be stopped.
I dislike the way we’re moving to, in effect, national mandatory ID. I should be amazed that Libertarians don’t hate voter ID laws, but nothing about Libertarians surprises me – they are inchoate and may as well live on the Fantasy Islands they dream of. It’d be a service to America to be rid of them.
Ohio got the reactionary voter suppression initiative onto the 2012 ballot. It’s not the case that liberals should just roll over on this one; the stealth campaign to restrict voting is now seeing sunlight.
This is pretty much the M.O. of the Republicans in Congress. They don’t believe in negotiating when they have their hands on the levers of power. If you are on the outside you have two choices, as far as they are concerned: (1) shut up or (2) give in.
There’s probably a psychological term for this mentality.
That was very well put, I think that sums it all up right there.
@bemused: the way I look at it, Democrats would have to be pretty darn terrible for me to EVER consider voting Republican. Down here in this very red state, some of the (white)40 somethings and younger cannot EVEN comprehend voting for a Democratic candidate. To them it’s tantamount to voting for an alien.
We Dems still have to do some real brand building here and across the country. Hopefully that process has started, and as someone already commented, perhaps last night victories injected some spine into those in Washington with a (D) after their names.
Cheryl from Maryland
Congratulations to Kay and her fellow workers and the voters of Ohio. Now get ready for next year!
And if they are on the outside then you have only one choice: bipartisanship, or, Dems have to do what the Rs would have done if they had won the election.
I guess it is a sign that I feel safe here that I confess that my Mom used to be management, i.e. Assistant VP for Administration at the university. And that is true if you know what you want. But she recently told a story about the child care workers who wanted to organize and their hands had to be held by everyone because this union thing was so new to them and their education level was so low. So I suppose I am saying they have to deal with you as an equal at some future time when you get the hang of it. One of the real benefits of unions is that workers experience self-governance within the union structure.
This is a smashing post. Very much shorter– it comes down to who wanted it more and who believed in it more, and who knew that they were keeping what they had. The lessons for 2012 come down to whether a candidate can inspire belief and that the issue isn’t always material things as much as it is beliefs about fairness.
(Even Greg Sargent said that Issue 3 was probably a rebuke to Obama/the ACA. I don’t have to know what FDL is saying after that. )
@gf120581:”California? Washington? Florida?” Way to waste money, folks. I don’t know whether to encourage this as a way to spend money that would have gone to Republican Candidates, or just laugh.
Woodrow L. Goode, IV
Speaking from Cuyahoga County. this was a bit of a perfect storm. A lot of things went into this.
1. The auto bailout happened. There are 97 different UAW locals in this state. Basically all the SB5 people came out in favor of letting the auto industry die– or making the price of the bailout killing the unions.
2. Continental merged with United. Cleveland is a hub for Continental, so there are lots of union workers here. Since the merger between arguably the second best airline (after Southwest) and everyone’s choice for worst, there have been all kinds of ‘negotiations’ that have involved biting the pillow.
3. Local Government. Mayor Hillbilly is 100% Right to Work and he’s tried to buy streetlights from China, court anti-union companies and build everything with non-union labor. The so-called reform movement (County and MetroHeakth) and all the initiatives (casino, convention center) have been have anti-democratic and anti-union.
4. The Orchestra. The contracts talks haven’t been remotes as toxic as Philly, but it’s been pretty much “grab your ankles.”
5. Decent Union Leadership. The Cleveland AFL-CIO and SEIU have both had extremely capable leaders for most of the last two decades. They also got along well. The folks in charge now are clowns, but the infrastructure hasn’t decayed that much.
Plus the former head of the AFL-CIO is Sherrod Brown’s state director and the ODP’s current executive director used to work out of his office.
6. The Newspapers. All of them slammed Ted Strickland pretty hard and guaranteed us that John Kasich was a great guy who’d been misrepresented and would get us all ponies.
A lot of voters accepted the candy and got into the car, hoping for the best.
7. All-white is alright. Kasich’s first brainstorm was to have an all-white cabinet. When asked if maybe he couldn’t find a Herman Cain or a Condi Rice for appearance’s sake, he offered the back of his hand and said he intended to appoint good people, and everyone knew negroes were shiftless.
The black community hates the unions up here, because they’re all run by Italians, Irish or Eastern Europeans who pretty much agree with Kasich. But that got them livid.
8. Liquor, the Turnpike and Guns (oh my). Why Kasich decided to privatize two things that were working just fine is beyond me. By pushing those things hard, he confirmed everyone;s worst nightmares and blew pretty much every bit of goodwill he had.
Had he gone after the unions first, he probably could have gotten away with saying he wanted deal with the bogey men. Not after announcing he wanted to sell both.
And then he helped get a law to basically let people carry nuclear weapons anywhere they felt like passed.
9. Wisconsin Watching Scott Walker push his wild-eyed agenda first made it pretty much impossible for Kasich to pretend that he was just a simple soul trying to make life better for simple folks.
10. The Water Bill. The wingnuts in the legislature made it legal for companies to drain Lake Erie, as long as they replaced the water with an equal volume of toxic waste.
When Kasich didn’t immediately come out that, he freaked out the tree-huggers and the academics and the hunters. He finally vetoed it, but only after a full-court press, where the coalition got together.
I’ve skipped a few things (the abortion bills, drill baby drill, pay raises to his cronies, redistricting, making fun of the cop who nailed him for speeding) and I didn’t mention the foreclosures or the stolen local bank, but people were surrounded by apocalyptic events suggesting that the world as they knew it was about to end– and Kasich was ready to break out the horns, hooves and pitchfork when it did. It was a cocktail of panic, frustration and rage unleashed at a target.
I would not assume this will carry over to anything or anyone who runs next year. Sherrod Brown should have no trouble tapping it because he’s been on the right side for ages. The other guy running statewide, not so much. (Since I am a hippie who wishes the country had elected a Democrat in 2008, you can take that with a grain of salt.)
Would it be hard to get this seething cauldron of rage back to the boiling point? Not at all. Knowing John Kasich as I do, in fact, I’m almost sure he’s trying to think of the most spiteful trick he can pull on the voters who told him “No.” It will be interesting (on some levels) to see what he comes up with.
Ohio Republicans have set a whole new standard for “overreach.” In who’s mind was making Kasich the face of Vote Yes in the closing weeks a good idea? The only thing more ridiculous was Pat Boone and his robo-calls.
Every word in every one of their ads was a damn lie. What they didn’t consider that just about everyone knows someone affected by the law, and they know their salaries aren’t excessive.
I wish 2012 was tomorrow. I’d like to see the smiles wiped off Kasich, Niehaus, and Batchelder’s collective puss.
@gf120581: Oregon is on that list, too. My husband and I read that and said, “Have they ever even been here? We have our occasional moments of idiocy, but this is most decidedly not 2004 anymore.