SMOKINCHOICES (and other musings)

May 22, 2015

Fresh Progressive “UP” in OH

Political junkie that I have been over the years, it is hard not to enter in more, but I promised myself – it just takes too much out of me. . .guess you just can’t take the passion out  – old  or otherwise.  Ex-Governor  Ted Strickland, whom I liked is running for Senator here in OH and had thought I’d vote for him.  But have been reading about this young 30 year old PROGRESSIVE with a fine education, civic smarts and a whole lot of new, modern and critical thinking.  I’m seriously deeply interested in him.  

When I realized the Ohio  Democratic Political Party had endorsed Strickland along with the Police Department, many other supporters and they were especially upset over this upstarts “brass you-know-what” to get in there and go for it anyway, well, it was easy to come to the conclusion – – ‘that’s my kind of man.’   Besides, I’m not forgetting how the leadership of the Ohio Democratic party put us in a very deep hole with that good-lookin’ x-fed agent who most certainly was never carefully vetted to become Governor of Ohio which is why Kasich claims to have won by overwhelming margins in order to distinguish himself in his current run for President.  His opponent didn’t have a drivers license — oops for around eight years. .WOW.  Nobody noticed.  Didn’t keep his speaking engagements and didn’t even show up – just walked away.  Boy was I flummoxed.  Couldn’t even find anyone to talk to in the party!  So, I don’t think I’ll be concerned what the “party” thinks in this state.  . . just those I’ve voted for and trust.  Any way, Sherrod Brown could use a bit of help

So, at this point,  P.G. SITTENFELD is looking damned good to me. . .(and I think he may have a real and quite significant future ahead of him.  Guess we’ll see.     Jan

 

P.G. Sittenfeld supports marijuana legalization proposal

                                                                                                                           COURTNEY HERGESHEIMER | DISPATCH PHOTO
P.G. Sittenfeld: “In 2016, I believe rank-and-file Democrats want a competition, not a coronation. And I am running to give them a voice and a choice.”

By Darrel Rowland  The Columbus Dispatch

 P.G. Sittenfeld achieved his goal on Thursday to set himself apart from the two better-known Ohio politicians also running for the U.S. Senate — but not the way he planned.
The 30-year-old Cincinnati City Council member mounted the west steps of the Statehouse to offer “an unapologetically progressive vision” as well as “differences in perspective” from fellow Democrat Ted Strickland, 73, and Republican incumbent Rob Portman, 59. He even joked about becoming the first senator able to write and send his own tweets.Rejecting the push by some Democrats to get him out of the contest, Sittenfeld declared, “The race has just begun.”But talking to reporters afterward, Sittenfeld strayed from his agenda and made even bigger news by announcing his support for the ResponsibleOhio’s for-profit plan to legalize marijuana and amend Ohio’s constitution to allow 10 investor-owned marijuana-growing sites across the state. The group is well on its way to gathering enough petition signatures to put the issue on the November ballot.Sittenfeld said he has long advocated “getting rid of old and broken laws” that allow billions of dollars to flow to “brutal drug dealers and cartels” when it could be used for building roads and bridges. He favors “decriminalization, legalization and tight regulation” of marijuana.His stance places him at odds with both Strickland — the former governor who backs legalizing only medicinal marijuana — and Portman, who opposes full legalization.

“What I support is a whole different approach with regard to drug use, and that is spending less money on the prosecution and incarceration side and more money on prevention and education, which I know works,” Portman said on Thursday on his weekly media call.

Sittenfeld also pointed to his staunch advocacy of gun laws — Strickland touted his “A” rating from the National Rifle Association in his last statewide campaign five years ago — as well as his support for mandatory paid sick days — Strickland headed off such a measure bound for the ballot when he was governor.

And Sittenfeld became the first of the trio to publicly back a possible amendment to the U.S. Constitution on campaign finances to stem the floodgates opened by the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision and ensuing rulings. But he wouldn’t mind if a Superpac that can receive unlimited contributions was formed to help his 2016 run.

During an 11-minute speech entitled “The Future I See,” the 30-year-old Princeton and Oxford grad said, “I am running because Washington is broken — and I believe fixing it will require new faces and fresh voices — the kind of new leadership that will make this campaign an exciting conversation about the future, rather than a stale argument about the past.”

Although he didn’t mention that the Democratic establishment in Ohio and Washington is solidly behind Strickland, Sittenfeld asserted that voters “don’t need to be told who their party’s nominee should be.”

“History shows — and great Ohio Democrats like (former U.S. Sens.) John Glenn, Howard Metzenbaum and (former Gov.) Dick Celeste proved — that testing our candidates in a primary almost always makes us stronger in a general election,” Sittenfeld said. “In 2016, I believe rank-and-file Democrats want a competition, not a coronation. And I am running to give them a voice and a choice.”

drowland@dispatch.com

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