Though another election, Ohio is one of the battleground states. Although we appreciate the impact, consider this downside: We’ve been seeing campaign ads seemly forever.
Current polls have Senator Obama ahead ranging from 2 to 6%. For those not familiar with our state, here’s some information about us because Ohio is a diverse state. What is popular in one region of the state may not resonate elsewhere.
No Republican has ever won without Ohio. Yet, of Ohio’s 88 counties, Senator Obama only won 5 or 6 during the Ohio primary – all urban!
The three metro Cs create a line through the state: Cincinnati-Columbus-Cleveland. These three cities are very different from one another. Cleveland was the more industrial and the most established. Columbus is our capital and home to our largest university, yet has experienced the most growth. Many in Cleveland have eastern European roots while Cincinnati is blended with German Catholics and southern U.S. heritage. Cleveland has always been considered as Democratic, while Cincinnati as Republican. (Senator McCain will probably get around 60% of the Cincinnati-area vote.)
A Republican Cleveland Mayor (George Voinovich) served as a two-term governor and is one of our current senators. In 2004, President Bush’s campaign visits to southwestern Ohio always gathered big, enthusiastic crowds while serving as a fertile ground for campaign dollars. The Cincinnati area is the home of Republican leader John Boehner.
Smaller cities as Dayton, Akron, Canton, Toledo, and Youngstown are witnessing a shrinking industrial base. Ohio’s unemployment rate is over 7%.
Wright-Patterson AFB gives the military a large presence in Dayton.
Eastern Ohio is home to sulfur-containing coal, thus the potential impact of clean-coal technology. Because our proximity to coal, coal-burning power plants are scattered along the Ohio River.
The upper half of Ohio’s western side is our agricultural land containing many small towns representing Middle American values of strong family, hard work, and local pride. Politically, this area resembles Indiana.
Appalachian counties, south of the C-C-C line, culturally and politically resemble eastern Kentucky and West Virginia. I grew up in this traditional-Republican area (but I also have many life experiences throughout the state) and this region is its own. To learn more about this area and its importance in this election, here are two informative articles: Appalachia & Portsmouth.
So goes Ohio, so goes the nation.