An e-mail from Ohio:
Inside Ohio, Voinovich’s retirement is being seen as a good thing by
conservatives. I don’t think this is a bad thing at all for the GOP,
either. The grassroots here have not forgotten the Bolton fiasco and
Voinovich would have likely shared a similar fate to Mike DeWine who was
abandoned by the base for his critical role in the Gang of 14. People were
so mad at DeWine in 06 that the campaign couldn’t get his signs distributed
in red areas of the state.
Perhaps most importantly, the retirement means that we will avoid a bloody
and costly primary between John Kasich and Rob Portman for Governor.
Portman is already aggressively courting conservative support for the
Senate race, which pretty much clears the field for Kasich in the
As far as Blackwell, there are many residual bad feelings left over within
Ohio from his horrible performance in the 06 governor’s race. Notice that
none of the Ohio delegation to the RNC have backed his candidacy. I think
he would be a great RNC chairman, and that is probably the best place for
him as far as Ohio is concerned.
Voinovich was starting to really show his age, which would have made it
nearly impossible to mount the type of campaign necessary to win against
either of his likely Dem opponents, Lt. Gov. Fisher or SecState Brunner.
All in all, good news for Ohio and the country.