Rigged? Wait, what?
Truth be told, CityBeat would love to endorse a Democrat for the First Congressional District. Generally speaking, we do not support Rep. Steve Chabot. We don’t like his opposition to Obama’s jobs bills. We don’t like how he went along with the debt-ceiling crisis of 2011 that nearly brought down the entire economy and led S&P to downgrade the U.S. credit rating from a AAA rating to a AA+ rating. We don’t like how he amended a transportation law to make it so Cincinnati can’t get streetcar funding from the federal government.
So we would love to endorse a Democratic opponent to contrast Chabot.
Unfortunately, we can’t. For starters, Jeff Sinnard, Chabot’s opponent, doesn’t even have a campaign website. When a candidate doesn’t take himself seriously enough to have a campaign website, it’s difficult for CityBeat to take him seriously.
But what’s really sad is we can’t fault Sinnard or the Democrats for not taking the race seriously. With how Republicans have rigged congressional districts (see: Issue 2), Democrats have almost no chance of winning in the First Congressional District. The 2010 congressional race between Chabot and Steve Driehaus was already handily in Chabot’s favor when Chabot won 51-46. In 2012, redistricting gave Chabot a massive boost with new support from Republican-leaning Warren County. There’s almost no way a Democratic opponent could win now.
So the verdict for the First Congressional District isn’t in favor of Chabot or Sinnard. Instead, the verdict is against a corrupt political system that lets politicians draw district boundaries to secure elections.