Well it’s now officially 2022 everyone… okay yes, it was 2022 when I started my last political piece but it doesn’t feel like it. Jesus fucking Christ people, is it really only February? Of course the US’s political situation still feels like a slow motion plane crashing into a children’s hospital stationed right next to a nuclear power plant, and I have a feeling I’m going to be opening every political piece in a similar way this year. I can’t even remember everything, aside from Stephen Breyer retiring and everyone pretending we’re going to fill his seat until the Senate Parliamentarian tells us we can’t take our Chasity belt off yet. Oh, you think it’s funny until you remember that Joe Manchin voted to confirm Brett Kavanaugh.
“Say Annie, why do you even write these pieces if you’re always so pessimistic?” says a hypothetical critic who clearly doesn’t know me very well. It’s because I want things to get better, and because I’ll leave the smug “I don’t care and everyone who cares is an idiot” bit to the Jimmy Dore fanboys. There’s always at least a few good signs, and a few opportunities to work with, and we have one in Ohio. The only problem is that Tim Ryan is standing in the way of it.
Ohio Senatorial Election (Morgan Harper Vs Josh Mandel)
So, incumbent Senator Rob Portman is retiring, which means that his seat is open this year. On the Democratic side, the primary comes down to two candidates. The one that we want to win is Morgan Harper, who some of you may remember for attempting to primary Joyce Beatty in 2020. While her campaign stated out well, she unfortunately got kneecapped because of Covid, which limited the amount of campaigning she could do. She also has a prior history as Senior Advisor at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, as Director of Policy & Advocacy at the American Economic Liberties Project, and the the co-founder of Columbus Stand Up!
Morgan Harper is running on a platform that includes Medicare for All, a Green New Deal, ending student debt, and expanding SSI. Most notably, one can see that Morgan Harper’s rhetoric takes on a populist tone, and is focused on taking on corrupt corporations and power structures. There is no ambiguity as to whether or not Morgan Harper is on the side of working class people. The same cannot be said for Tim Ryan, the current front runner for the Democratic nomination.
Some of you may remember that Tim Ryan ran for President for all of eight minutes before dropping out because he continuously polled below 1%. While he was running for President, there were two memorable moments of his, both for all the wrong reasons. The first of which was Bernie Sander’s famous “I wrote the damn bill!” quip was directed at Tim Ryan. This came after Tim Ryan was arguing against Medicare for All by saying it would be unfair to Union members who had to fight to get their healthcare that now no one else has to worry about going bankrupt due to medical bills, and when he tried to interrupt Bernie to argue with him on the contents of his own bill. This is even more egregious since Tim Ryan had Co-sponsored Medicare for All earlier that year, yet later claimed he would not vote for it. This either means that Tim Ryan only signed onto Medicare for All for the sake of optics, or that he allowed corporate donors to change his mind the moment he ran for President.
His second moment of infamy came in the form of a bizarre, George W Bush esque rant about how Donald Trump is not hawkish enough when it comes to the war in Afghanistan. This not only results in him getting humiliated by Tulsi Gabbard, but he even blames the Taliban for 9/11, despite the fact that this was done by Al Qeada. It’s already bad enough when you get humiliated by someone who did away with any pretense of being a progressive the moment she retired, but this also indicates one of two things. Either Tim Ryan subconsciously conflated the two groups because they are both evil and scary while also being from the middle east (something you really should know if you’re running for President), or that Tim Ryan was aware of this distinction, and was lying so that he could tap into an Islamophobic sentiment to justify the continued occupation of Afghanistan.
Some other things to note about Ryan include that in his 2020 re-election bid, only 9.30% of his 2020 campaign funds came from donations under $200, that 63.3% percent of his Senate fundraising comes from out of state, and that only 33.5% of his donations come from women. And… well… a lot of shit. I was not expecting to uncover so much dirt on Tim Ryan when writing this, but we’re going to have a lot to talk about. But should I begin with his Senate platform, or cover his record from the beginning?
I guess I’ll cover his Senate platform since I already covered his Presidential campaign. So first things first, he’s accepting money from Joe Manchin’s PAC. I guess his criticism of Manchin is about as genuine as his support for Medicare for All then. On Tim Ryan’s own campaign website, he brags about how he “worked across the aisle to increase funding and training for law enforcement to detect and prevent the spread of opioids and strengthen border security to stop the flow of deadly drugs from China and Mexico.” This was mentioned in his page about healthcare. Who needs Medicare for All when you add more to our bloated police budgets, and keep the dirty Mexicans and their drugs out? Because that’s clearly what working class Americans need!
So one can clearly see that Tim Ryan is an establishment puppet who stands for nothing and will do jack shit if by some miracle he manages to win election to the US Senate. What plenty of people won’t tell you is that he hasn’t always bothered with a fake progressive tap dance. His Human Rights Campaign ratings for his terms in the 108th, 109th, and 110th US congress respectively were 55%, 63%, and 85%. While Ryan did eventually
decide he wanted to be President had a sudden change of heart and learned the error of his ways, it’s telling that he spent almost half his time in congress doing this shit. But perhaps I should drag out the individual votes for clarity.
- From 2003 to 2004, Tim Ryan refused to Co-sponsor four LGBT related bills put forth, all of which had at least one Republican co-sponsor.
- From 2005 to 2006, Tim Ryan refused too Co-sponsor the three LGBT related bills put fourth, all of which, once again, had over 110 co-sponsors, including some Republicans.
- From 2007 to 2008, Tim Ryan refused too Co-sponsor the three… you get the idea.
- From 2009 to 2009, Tim Ryan… Co-sponsor… yada yada……
Yeah, it took over seven years for this dipshit to decide whether or not it’s okay to legally discriminate against LGBT people. Notice a running theme here? Tim Ryan has no principals, and a soulless husk who will say and do whatever he has to in order to get power. And we’re supposed to rely on him to protect our rights?
You can also add to this the fact that Tim Ryan was anti-choice until 2015, and voted to ban “intact dilation and extraction” abortions, to ban minors from crossing state lines to get an abortion, and to count violence against pregnant women as two separate offenses, regardless of whether or not the perpetrator knew that the woman was pregnant or intended to harm the fetus. When Ohio is faced with the passing of an even more extreme abortion ban than Texas, asking us to support someone like Tim Ryan over Morgan Harper is downright insulting!
And then there’s his environmental record. Of course, Tim Ryan is against the Green New Deal because it’s just to RADICAL of a policy to deal with such a negligible concern such as the extinction of the human race, and he just recently said he was in favor for the new jobs the comet will provide… oh wait, that’s Don’t Look Up! God, they are so fucking similar that I’m always getting them mixed up.
Tim Ryan’s lifetime League of Conservation Voters score is a 91%, which demonstrates the precise problem with grading politicians on decisions that effect millions of people the same way you score a math test. If a pilot landed the plane correctly 91% of the time, most of us would still be rightfully concerned about stepping on that plane. But because every fucking Republicans has a 0%, suddenly anything looks good, even ignoring the fact that Tim Ryan voted against his own party on a number of environmental legislation. Examples of which include.
- Voting to overturn over 200 state laws on Food Safety standards.
- Voting against the delay of the creation of two massive energy transmission corridors across 11 states with little consultation from the locals.
- Voting in favor of allowing grazing operations inside National Landscape Conservation System protected locations.
- Voting to prevent the EPA from introducing standards to protect against dangerous coal ash pollution.
- Voting in favor of the SHARE Act of 2013, which weakened the EPA’s ability to regulate toxic lead in ammunition, allowed the use of motorized vehicles and road construction within protected wilderness areas, and encouraged hunters to kill protected species in other countries and then seek legal waivers from Congress.
- Voting in favor of another bill trying to prevent regulations against coal ash pollution.
- Voting to cut the Department of Energy out of the approval process for Liquefied Natural Gas exports, leading to increased fracking.
- Voting against an amendment to weaken the SHARE Act.
- Voting to lift the ban on exports of crude oil.
- Voting to prioritize power companies during hydropower licensing.
Some other Tim Ryan fuckups include, voting against the creation of a Federal “Do Not Call” list, voting against a resolution to condemn the abuse of Iraqi prisoners, voting against removing armed forcesfrom Pakistan, voting in favor of invading Libya, voting in favor of the Anti sex worker bill SESTA/FOSTA, Voting to condemn the BDS movement, voting against cutting the bloated Pentagon budget in the middle of a pandemic, and voting to spend $1,000,000,000 on Israel’s iron dome.
This is usually the part where I’d take a look at his donors, but do I even have to at this point? If you don’t see why Tim Ryan sucks after I’ve pointed all this shit out, then I’d like to sell you the Brooklyn Bridge. But this section isn’t even over yet, I also have to talk about the fucking Republicans. God I fucking hate politics!
The current front runner for the Republican nomination is Josh Mandel, a former state treasurer and far right asshole. He was also the 2012 Republican nominee against Sherrod Brown, who he lost to. Keep in mind that Sherrod Brown is one of the most progressive Democrats we have in the Senate, IE the exact opposite of Tim Ryan.
Josh Mandel’s record as a former state rep includes, creating legislation to divest from companies doing business in Iran, voting against making cockfighting a felony, Voting against requiring landlords to inform tenants of foreclosure, claiming that climate change research is “inconclusive and riddled with fraud,” voting to restrict adult entertainment establishments, and voting against a bill to protect LGBT people from discrimination.
During his first campaign for state treasurer, he ran an add falsely claiming that his opponent was Muslim. As state treasurer, he made Ohio the first state to enable people to pay taxes in cryptocurrency, a phenomenon that is every bit as bad for the environment as it is for good taste.
During his 2012 Senate campaign, Politifact criticized his campaign for its “casual relationship with the truth,” and rated over half of his reported claims as either “mostly false,” “false,” or “pants on fire.” Pants on fire still has the most btw. A few days before the election, his own family published an open letter condemning Josh Mandel for his anti-gay policies. In 2017, Josh Mandel tweeted his support of alt right Pizzagate conspiracy theorists Mike Cernovich and Jack Posobiec in response to them being criticized by the Anti-defamation league. Keep in mind, Josh Mandel is the grand son of holocaust survivors. It’s absolutely pathetic what this sniveling excuse for a man will do for power. But for all of Mandel’s virtue signaling about protecting children, he was awfully hesitant to condemn accused pedophile Roy Moore back in 2017.
Last year, Josh Mandel received a temporary suspension for creating a poll about whether “Muslim Terrorists” or “Mexican Gangbangers” would commit more crimes. Don’t you miss the days when they would at least TRY to hide the racism? I think we’re only a few years away from someone just deciding to say the N-word and still getting elected. Less than two months later, three campaign staffers quit due to toxic work atmosphere. Not sure what they were expecting when they signed up to work for this jackass, but good on them for getting out of there. And in October of last year, Josh Mandel just decided to say the quiet part loud, and started claiming that the pandemic, Black Lives Matter, Antifa, and the January 6th incident were all orchestrated by George Soros.
So yes, the fact that we’re at the point where all this Nazi shit is present within a major Senate campaign is very fucking bad. But he’s still engaging in plenty of old fashioned corruption if that’s not enough for you… although it really should be. Some of Mandel’s corruption includes, abusing his power to promote the business interests of his campaign donors, using campaign funds to by himself a car, and spending 1.84 million of tax payer’s money on advertisements. Josh Mandel’s campaign is even funded by a dark money group subpoenaed for a bribery lawsuit.
The plus side is that Josh Mandel is sinking in Republican primary polls, and has lost a few to Mike Gibbons, an old, white businessman who runs a right wing Super PAC and help funded Trump’s 2016 campaign in Ohio. If you couldn’t tell, Mike Gibbons is more so your typical dog whistle Republican, as opposed to to a wannabe Klansman like Mandel. So you can expect him to say “Critical Race Theory” a lot, and to say that Biden stole the election, but he won’t go mask off with it.
There’s also the prospect of JD Vance, who has the endorsement of such wonderful right wing figureheads like Marjorie Taylor Greene, Charlie Kirk, and Josh Hawley, and whose campaign website reaches self parody levels where most of the issues have some mention of either China, social Justice, or Blacks Live Matter. JD Vance’s campaign is basically if a right wing troll got access to a whole bunch of money and decided to run for Senate. Thankfully, he has been lagging quite far behind in the polls.
If you need a clear picture of what a Harper Vs Mandel race would look like, look no further than this debate.
Keep in mind, this debate is hosted by a right wing group, and Harper still obliterated Mandel in one of the most one sided political debates I’ve ever seen. Not only is Morgan Harper right on all the policies, she knows just how to call out Josh Mandel and make him look like the fool he is, while also redirecting to the issues that everyday citizens are actually concerned about. Compare this to Tim Ryan, who couldn’t even be bothered to show up.
Well, it seems like Morgan Harper has gotten some attention, given that Harper not only got covered by the New York times and made multiple headlines. Considering that not only is Josh Mandel coming back for another debate (that will have inevitably already happened by the time you read this), but that Tim Ryan ALSO agreed to a debate, it’s clear that Harper is getting her name out there. Of course, Harper has some catching up to do, but hopefully this will lead to some more high profile endorsements. Given that AOC and Bernie Sanders have begun endorsing candidates for this cycle, there’s a decent chance they will at least know about Morgan Harper’s campaign. Otherwise, it’s all up to us.
Update: So, I just watched the second debate. Holy shit, Mandel made an even bigger ass out of himself than in the last one. Enough that even the moderators and the audience started getting on his ass. And this guy wants to be elected to the US Senate?
Morgan Harper – Donation Link
Ohio Gubernatorial Election (John Cranley Vs Mike DeWine)
So, Ohio has a Gubernatorial election as well. While the Senatorial race will inevitably be the main event, let’s not forget that we have a Republican Governor up for re-election. If I’m being real with you all, I don’t think either of the two Democratic candidates have a chance unless you have Morgan Harper at the top of the ticket. While polls are fairly close, the problem is that both of the candidates are centrist leaning, relying on similar strategies to Joe Biden in 2020. Keep in mind that not only did Trump win Ohio in both 2016 and 2020, Biden is also deeply unpopular, which will negatively reflect on moderates. It’s almost as if people don’t like it when you don’t follow through on your campaign promises!
In regards to which candidate would be better, I’m inclined to support John Cranley over Nan Whaley because Cranley seems less aligned with the establishment Democratic party and is far more policy oriented than Whaley. Apparently she was also sent bribe money from a Dayton contractor, but that isn’t fully substantiated. But either of them are immensely preferably to either of the major Republican candidates.
The current incumbent is Mike DeWine, who is a bigoted old white guy who has held political office for over half a century and won’t go the fuck away. He spent four years as Greene County Prosecutor, two years as a state senator, eight years as a US congressman, four years as Lieutenant Governor, twelve years as a US Senator, eight years as Ohio Attorney General, and he is currently on his fourth year as Governor of Ohio. And yes, he’s been a complete scumbag the entire time, and I’m exhausted just thinking about listing off every shitty thing he’s done. Is it even going to mean anything if I do?
Well, a short list of Mike DeWine’s bullshit includes, attempting to sue the Obama administration to repeal Obamacare, signing a heartbeat ban on abortion, signing a bill requiring burial of aborted fetal tissue, a long history of homophobia which included him arguing in the Obergefell v. Hodges case, an opposition to net neutrality, signing a bill to prevent Universities from blocking speeches from
fascists controversial speakers, refusing to prosecute any of the people involved in the Steubenville High rape case until public outcry, and also being involved in the same bribery scandal as Josh Mandel.
That being said, Mike DeWine is actually a refreshing change of pace when compared to malicious psychopaths like Greg Abbot and Ron Desantis. Mike DeWine was one of the Republican few Governors to actually put forth Covid restrictions so that we don’t have a bunch of people spreading a deadly, contagious, disease everywhere. He also criticized an Anti-trans bill in the Ohio House, and had enough of a set of balls to condemn Trump for inspiring an attempted coup.
Unfortunately, since we can’t have nice things, the Trump Gestapo not only tried to get Mike DeWine impeached, but there was even an attempt at a kidnapping him. Since that didn’t work, he’s now being primaried by former US congressman and 2018 Senatorial nominee Jim Renacci. So, we have three Republicans who lost to Sherrod Brown running this year. Also Jim Renacci was also involved in the bribery scandal so there’s yet another similarity. It’s almost as if the Ohio Republican party, just like every other Republican party, is massively corrupt!
And of course, Jim Renacci lacks the few decent Characteristic that Mike DeWine had. He supports banning trans women from women’s sports, accuses Mike DeWine of “fear tactics” because he wants to protect people from a deadly disease, and accused Joe Biden of trying to “divide Americans” because he condemned Trump’s attempted coup. Now there’s that Republican scuminess that we’re all accompanied to!
So, despite the amount of people claiming that Mike DeWine is a “liberal RINO,” there isn’t all that much separating him and Renacci. This speaks volumes about how Republicans, in that it shows that they don’t care about policy. To them, it’s entirely about who is more sycophantic and blindly loyal to Donald Trump. It’s because of this that, despite the fact that Mike DeWine isn’t all that different from Renacci, that him getting re-nominated would be an immensely better sign because it would show that there’s still a portion of the Republican base that can resist being pulled into outright fascism.
That being said, it’s still best to not take a chance on DeWine if he gets nominated. Also, just to spare myself the labor of stating the obvious for twelve more paragraphs, be sure to give your support to Jeff Crossman and Chelsea Clark in their campaigns for Ohio Attorney General and Secretary of State respectively.
Ohio Congressional District 11 Election (Nina Turner Vs Shontel Brown)
So, I initially planned to write about the targeted Red Vs Blue races in Ohio’s 1st, 9th, and 13th congressional district, but I just don’t have it in me to write a 10K+ word piece for every state, so I’m I’m going to sum up all of those very quickly, and tell you vital information. Now listen closely… Republicans are bad, and you shouldn’t vote for them! I know that this is likely a shock to you, and you need answers after I dropped this enormous bombshell revelation, but we need to move on!
As I’ve alluded to quite a few times, I doubt that I alone can influence the general population as a whole, and there’s been a lot indicating that Democrats are likely going to get slaughtered in this election. Now contrary to what right wingers will tell you, this isn’t because the population has accepted fascism as their new God emperor and Republicans will win every election from here on out, but rather because Biden’s approval rating is shit, and a bunch of people will vote for the other party in a sort of rebound effect.
So while it’s important to keep as many Republicans out of power in the short term, in the long term, we need to bolster the defenses of the Democratic party by replacing as many corporatists as possible. And this brings us to Nina Turner… again. Yes, I wrote about her race last year, and that didn’t go the way we hoped. I predicted in that piece that establishment media and donors would all band together to stop Nina Turner and her nefarious plan to give everyone healthcare, and they were successful in that attempt. Particularly, a large influx of money poured in from right wing Super PAC “Democratic Majority for Israel” spent a ton of money on dishonest ads painting Nina as a right wing sympathizer.
While Nina Turner was quite vocal in her criticism of Joe Biden, ads against her conveniently left out the fact that Nina was criticizing him from the left. It turns out that pointing out that she said “Biden bad” isn’t enough on its own, they have to say she’s a Republican. This is despite the fact that Nina Turner is more progressive and left leaning than Shontel Brown in every category. Let’s take a look at Shontel’s record shall we?
As a Cuyahoga County Councilor, she voted to give 32 million dollars in taxpayer contracts to a company connected to her boyfriend and voted to give herself a $7,000 pay raise. During the campaign, she included a fake endorsement from a Garfield Heights councilman who endorsed Nina, used a pre-recorded applause sound effect at a rally, and accepted funding from far right GOP donors, including Trump ally Robert Craft.
Just a few weeks ago, Shontel Brown has already falsely stated that the dark money was on Nina’s side in their election, with the only evidence cited being that Nina raised more money. While Nina Turner did in fact raise more than Shontel Brown, over 96% of Turner’s funds came from individual contributions. For comparison, Shontel Brown raised only 81% through individual contributions, 70.88% of which were large individual contributions. On top of this, $1,707,029 in outside money was spent on ads opposing Nina Turner and $937,764 was spent on ad supporting Shontel Brown. Meanwhile, only $641,959 was spent on ads supporting Nina, and $937,764 was spent supporting Brown. There’s no other explanation, Shontel Brown is blatantly lying.
On the issues, it’s obviously no contest, Nina Turner has made Medicare for All a cornerstone of her platform. While Shontel Brown has now co-sponsored the bill, we already know from Tim Ryan that this means nothing when donors get involved. Nina Turner supports Palestinian rights while Shontel Brown denies war crimes and will inevitably resort to calling Nina Turner an anti-Semite (which I’m sure has nothing to do with the hundreds of millions she’s received from the pro-Israel lobby). It’s no contest! If it was, she wouldn’t need to lie! Let’s make sure we finished what we started in 2021.
Nina Turner – Donation Link
I initially planned to cover the state legislative elections, as I did with my Texas PT Piece, but it does not seem as if Ballotpedia will be posting the candidate list any time soon. Due to the fact that the new district maps have been struck down twice by the Ohio Supreme Court, there seems to be talks of delaying the primary or even having two separate primaries for statewide and district based elections. As such, I will end this piece here since I got the three most important races covered. Unfortunately, I also don’t know how this will effect Nina Turner’s race. Additionally, I wanted to write about Daniel Kilgore, a progressive who is running in what is currently Ohio’s 15th congressional district, but he has not major opponents currently and it is unknown where his new district will be, so I can’t point out anything other than that he’s there and you should support him
Daniel Kilgore – Donation Link
We have reached the point where it seems that everything is starting to spiral into absolute madness, enough so that trans people didn’t even get a full day to panic about Texas banning trans kids. It’s horrifying, and it’s exhausting, but we have to keep fighting! Getting Morgan Harper the nomination for Senate is the only hope that we can prevent a psychopath like Josh Mandel from getting elected, so she’s easily the most important candidate to support. But of course, John Cranley and Nina Turner need your help as well.
I really can’t understate the current risk that comes from Republicans taking more power. We have to push them back as much as possible. It’s best we do this with ballots, before we have to do so with bullets.
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