Over the weekend, for the second time this year, Ohio law enforcement officers shot and killed a black person carrying an air gun.

In the first case, in Beavercreek, John Crawford III, 22, was shot by police in August while carrying around an air rifle sold at the Walmart store he was in. No officers were indicted. In the second case, in Cleveland on Saturday, police shot and killed 12-year-old Tamir E. Rice who was carrying an airsoft replica handgun at a playground.

A 12-year-old… playing with a toy gun… at a playground.

Both killings came in [...]

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The 2014 mid-term elections have made allies of opposing political players, with both calling on the Ohio General Assembly to make redistricting reform a top priority.

In a joint statement released Tuesday, Opportunity Ohio CEO Matt Mayer and ProgressOhio Executive Director Sandy Theis agree that the always thorny and usually hyper-partisan subject of drawing legislative district maps is broken and needs fixing to be fair to voters.

“With voter turnout at record low levels, it is clear the dark art of drawing Ohio’s legislative maps in partisan self-interest is turning off voters, and we urge lawmakers to adopt meaningful redistricting [...]

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When Republican governors like Ohio’s John R. Kasich find themselves in the spotlight of presidential politics, the light shining on them often illuminates more than just them. In the case of the just released audit report by the Office of Inspector General, Department of Homeland Security on how well Ohio under the Kasich Administration has been complying with federal reporting requirements for DHS grants, what was revealed is the Buckeye State has many shortcoming to resolve, among them a disregard for federal law, and maybe $3.6 million that could be returned to Washington.

The Department of Homeland Security provides [...]

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Dear John:

Permit me to interrupt your howling at President Obama for his action on immigration reform. Your darkest views on releasing millions of illegal immigrants from the bondage of practiced anonymity have reached into my own ancestry. And as the President reminded us, they didn’t all cross borders but came by planes and ships, too.

Mine came on ships from the Mediterranean (that’s the enormous freshwater sea, John, that provided some of the routes for the tidal waves of immigrants seeking a better life on our shores – although many were deceived by the cynical transporters and debarked instead [...]

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Any reporter who’s attended one of John Kasich’s patented political Sermon on the Mount pressers knows it doesn’t take long for the go-go state CEO to invoke the Lord in some form or fashion. It’s basic Kasich, bring God into the conversation to secure the unassailable high, heavenly ground that no timid statehouse reporter would dare push back on.

Kasich has found that faith-based, dog-whistle rhetoric is his best bargain to parlay his limited compassion for the so-called “people living in the shadows” into his political compassion play. The phrase has been crafted over many years to show without offering any detail that [...]

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A recent email response from one of Ohio’s State School Board members called the “5 of 8″ rule “outdated” and stated that there are many other specialist positions that school must hire these days.  While it is true that there are many additional specialists that schools and districts need to employ these days than when the rule was created, the specialists that are mandated by this particular rule are uniformly critical to all children while other needs vary widely across the state.

In fact, I would make the case that the “5 of 8″ rule is outdated because it does not require all of the key [...]

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When outgoing Ohio Representative Gerald Stebelton introduced House Bill 661 to increase the annual salaries of Ohio’s elected officials, he missed a grand opportunity to put his money where his mouth is.  Stebelton has long decried the current standard pay scales that teachers typically follow, pushing a merit-based pay structure for school districts.  In his bill, however, Stebelton simply seeks to update the existing legislative pay structure for elected officials where everyone gets the exact same base pay regardless of their individual efforts.  It’s beyond hypocritical.

House Bill 661 isn’t likely all [...]

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It’s only been two weeks since John Kasich won a resounding victory in what was the poorest voter turnout election since the 1940s.  But two Ohio newspapers, who dragged their journalism credentials through the mud this year by pummeling Kasich’s Democratic opponent to an early death, are again basking in the aurora of the wannabe president as he practices the high art of political engagement that he has crafted over decades.  Not answering questions, ignoring opponents and the public,  and feigning dis-interest in a race everyone knows he’s very interested in, were some of his winning ways. They will now be reborn with [...]

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News sources reported today that Ohio’s unemployment rate, which was 5.7 percent in July and August, dropped to 5.6 percent for September, “slightly better than the national rate” of 5.9 percent for September.  One headline, using monthly job statistics released by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, shouted, “Ohio’s unemployment rate fell to 5.3 percent for October.

Wow! Sounds like Gov. John Kasich is creating a lot of jobs!

While the numbers cited are accurate, they are also misleading. According to the Wall Street Journal, each state should really be judged by how well it is doing compared [...]

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Republicans in the Ohio General Assembly have devised a great new way to tackle redistricting “reform” while crowing about bipartisanship and solving exactly nothing, at least not for anybody who cares about fair elections.

And Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted is pushing hard to get it done by the end of the year.

With shades of Senate Bill 5’s “last best offer” provisions, one proposal being offered by House Speaker Pro Tempore Matt Huffman, R-Lima, is an “impasse resolution” that would allow four members of the majority party to draw the districts, then go to voters to ask [...]

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