Tuesday, October 18, 2005


Arnold to endorse Issue 4

In a move that is sure to upset the Ohio GOP's applecart, NY Times reporter Dean Murphy said that California Gov. Arnold Schwarzeneggar would actively support Reform Ohio Now's Issue 4 in a effort to bolster sagging support for a somewhat similar effort in his home state:
A campaign aide to Mr. Schwarzenegger, Darrel Ng, said Monday that the governor endorsed the Ohio measure, known on the Nov. 8 ballot as Issue 4, though he has not said so publicly. A top supporter of the measures in both states said Mr. Schwarzenegger would participate in a series of public events this week to signal his stance. "He has agreed to do it," said the supporter, Chellie Pingree, president of Common Cause, a watchdog group that is pushing for redistricting changes in more than a dozen states, including California and Ohio. Ms. Pingree appeared Monday in San Jose with Mr. Schwarzenegger at a campaign stop on behalf of the California measure, Proposition 77. She said Mr. Schwarzenegger's willingness to break ranks with Ohio Republicans on the measure demonstrated that "this is the same issue in different states and though the political players change, incumbent politicians don't want to change the system no matter where they are."
We agree with Pingree that it's the same issue (redistricting) but the similarities pretty much end there. Substantively, the CA proprosal is a watered down reform. More importantly have been convinced by the persuasive of others that without Republicans supporting a redistricting reform in a major red state, Prop. 77 would amount to a unilateral disarmament in a blue state stronghold. In other words, the idea is right, but it should be part of a broader political set of negotiations.

And while Arnold's endorsement has got to be seen as something of an act motivated by a fear of lossing on Prop. 77, his endorsement has got to be seen as a major blow to the Ohio First folks. Although Schwarzeneggar's popularity has plummeted in California, there are very few folks outside of the west coast that are aware of his troubles. A highly visible endorsement of Issue 4 can do nothing but help the propopals prospects as well as the rest of the reforms.

And we still wonder, can Sen. John McCain be far behind?

We suspect that Arnold will be looking for a few of the Ohio Republicans who have endorsed Issues 2-5 to stump for him in California, but none will come close to having the impact that he would have here, especially in central Ohio where he is still well-known for his huge annual body-building and fitness expo that is held in Columbus.


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