0 Comments · Wednesday, April 6, 2016
Ohio Gov. John Kasich continues to
campaign for the GOP presidential nomination, despite the nearly
hopeless delegate math that has him trailing far behind frontrunner
Donald Trump and second-place candidate U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz.
by Steve Beynon
33 days ago
Posted In: 2016 election
at 11:28 AM | Permalink
John Kasich was crushed in the last round of primary contests, even losing to
the ghost of Sen. Marco Rubio in Utah from early ballots casted before the
Florida senator terminated his campaign. Between the recent contests in Utah
and Arizona, Kasich failed to pick up any delegates.
This battle for
the Republican nomination has not been kind to governors. Chris Christie, Scott
Walker, Bobby Jindal and Mike Huckabee have all been casualties in a rambunctious
political climate that seeks mischief and is giving the finger to the
establishment by hopping on the Trump train or embracing the rebellious Texas
Senator Ted Cruz.
Kasich sits with a mere 143 delegates. Trump is far in the lead with 739,
followed by Cruz’s 465. It is a long shot for the Texas senator to halt Trump’s
warpath to the nomination — it is mathematically impossible for Kasich. It
takes 1,237 delegates to secure the GOP nomination. Even if the Ohio governor
won every contest moving forward, there are not enough delegates for him to be
victory was Ohio — a contest he won by 11 points. However, Trump defeated the
governor in virtually all of Ohio’s southern counties and every county that
borders Pennsylvania and West Virginia. While Kasich’s victory in his home
state was a moral victory, it highlighted that even with a home field
advantage, he still could not get a sweeping victory like we saw with Cruz and
Sen. Bernie Sanders in their states.
that, he probably holds the record for most fourth-place victories. Outside of
the Buckeye State, Kasich has struggled with name recognition or gathering any
meaningful traction — a weakness that is entirely understandable when you have
to make noise while in the same room as a man that flies
around on a private jet with his name on it.
strategy is digging in northeastern states like Pennsylvania, where Cruz is not
expected to perform well. His campaign is not about defeating his opponents
with delegates — it is about denying Trump every vote possible.
This points to
both Kasich as a weak candidate and the power of Trump’s message. Kasich has
never had a real message in his bid for the presidency — other than not being a
jerk on stage. Instead of building his vision for the Oval Office, he hides in
the corner biding his time for Trump’s self-destruction. However, that
destruction never happened and is unlikely to ever occur.
either tapping out, accepting Trump will be the nominee — and possibly our next
president — or they’re holding their noses and siding with Cruz, a candidate
that in any other presidential run would be seen as the fringe candidate that
needs to be stopped at all costs.
It is hard to
tell if Kasich actually thinks he can show up to the GOP convention with a few
hundred delegates and deny Trump the nomination, or if this is a last-ditch
effort to put the Ohio governor out there to take humiliating defeats while
trying to soak up handfuls of delegates in hopes of putting some dents in
Trump’s almost inevitable nomination.
To deny Trump’s
nomination would be the GOP spitting in the faces of their voters. The
democratic process picked Donald Trump, and it is hard to not take Trump
seriously when he suggests there will be riots if the party robbed him of his
Bernie Sanders won the delegate game only to be toppled by Hillary Clinton’s
superdelegates. There would certainly be some liberal-on-liberal violence in
the aisles of Whole Foods.
If this is
Kasich’s strategy, it should raise concerns of how much respect for the
democratic process he has. If he is just crossing his fingers that Trump’s
plane crashes, he should admit it instead of suggesting he is going to upset
Republican voters of their candidate to lead the free world.
Donald Trump’s West Chester rally highlights deep divides in Ohio ahead of 2016 election
0 Comments · Monday, March 14, 2016
West Chester isn’t known for its political protests, but GOP
presidential primary frontrunner Donald Trump brought out the deep
divides running through contemporary American politics during his March
13 rally in the sleepy exurb north of Cincinnati.
by Steve Beynon
106 days ago
The battle for Iowa and New
Hampshire kicked into high gear at Thursday’s Republican debate, featuring a
smaller cast of candidates. Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz,
John Kasich, Chris Christie and Jeb Bush took the stage and engaged in one of
the debate’s bloodiest battles as the Feb. 1 Iowa caucus looms.
Yes, this election starts in two
Bromance Between Trump and Cruz Is Over
Some of the debate’s most
electrifying moments are when these two went head-to-head exchanging blows to
win over the Iowa’s Republican base. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas came out on top in
this battle, towering over a seemingly desperate Donald Trump. However, polls
indicate Trump might still win the war for the early primary states.
The Texas senator’s citizenship has
been in question lately, however this is more of an attempt to resurrect the
birther movement than any real questioning of the Constitution. Let's not forget
Trump was a major player in the birther movement against President Obama.
Section 1 of Article Two of the U.S.
“No Person except a natural born Citizen,
or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this
Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any
Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of
thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United
Cruz was a Canadian citizen born to an American mother and
most interpretations would consider him “natural born.” However, there are some
arguments against Cruz’s eligibility. The Constitution does not clearly define
what natural born is.
Trump started using this against the Texas senator once he
started gaining in early states, positioning himself as a heavyweight. However,
to clear the air, the Fox Business moderators started the citizenship topic.
This virtually cleared the stage; the only thing that mattered was Trump and
“You know, back in September, my friend Donald said that
he had had his lawyers look at this from every which way, and there was no
issue there,” Cruz said referring to his Canadian birth. "There was
nothing to this birther issue … Now, since September, the Constitution hasn't
When Trump was asked by a moderator why he was bringing up
the citizenship issue now, Trump fired back with the kind of honesty we seldom
get: “Because now he's going a little bit better [in polls]. No, I didn't care.
Hey look, he never had a chance. Now, he's doing better. He's got probably a
four- or five-percent chance.”
The Texas senator continued his fire against the
real-estate giant, saying he “embodies New York values,” suggesting Iowa and New
Hampshire voters should think twice about the billionaire’s roots.
“Not a lot of conservatives come out of Manhattan,” Sen.
Cruz said. He has also suggested Donald Trump is a New York liberal pretending to have
Trump defended his hometown, reaching for a very cringe-worthy use of 9/11.
"We took a big hit with the World Trade Center —
worst thing ever, worst attack ever in the United States, worse than Pearl
Harbor because they attacked civilians," Trump said. "They attacked
people having breakfast. And, frankly, if you would've been there, and if you would've
lived through that like I did with New York people — the way they handled that
attack was one of the most incredible things that anybody has ever seen."
While the bromance might be over going into Iowa, both
candidates suggested they might pick the other one to be their vice president
if they take the White House. Perhaps a Cruz/Trump is on the table for the
Sen. Rand Paul Goes Down Honorably
The Kentucky senator didn’t qualify for the main stage
debate. However, he was invited to the undercard debate along with Carly
Fiorina, Rick Santorum and Mike Huckabee. Rand Paul refused to be seen as a
second-tier candidate and didn’t show up to the lesser debate only to share a
stage with reject candidates.
Sen. Paul hasn’t dropped out, but you might have had a
better chance of winning the Powerball than getting a President Rand Paul.
This didn’t stop Paul’s fangirls from showing up in the
chanting “WE WANT RAND!” in the
middle of the main debate.
Instead, The Daily Show was kind enough to offer the
senator his very own “Singles Night” debate. Host Trevor Noah and
Sen. Paul drank bourbon for 20 minutes and talked policy.
You can read CityBeat’s profile of Sen. Rand Paul here.
Dr. Ben Carson Is Over
When asked his first question on Thursday night, Carson
responded, "I was going to ask you to wake me up," which might have
been funny if he wasn’t the candidate known for looking like he is sleeping all
The famous neurosurgeon has been an oddity this entire
race. I covered Carson’s visit to Cincinnati last year and even had the
privilege of meeting him. However, something felt off about him.
I’m less referring to the man’s politics and more about
his mode of thinking. His arguments are typically muddled, and myself and most
others covering this election are commonly left scratching our heads wondering
what exactly Carson is talking about.
His supporters at the rally weren’t attracted to any
specific policies of Carson’s, but literally everyone I interviewed said the
same thing: They liked that he wasn’t a politician.
Wanting someone who isn’t a politician is attractive, but
sometimes you need a politician to do politician things: like make a good case
for why they should be president. Donald Trump isn’t a politician, but he is an
excellent communicator and doesn’t fall asleep during debate.
Carson’s campaign has been a disaster. He was a GOP star
for part of the summer, but his own staff says he’s difficult to work with and the brain surgeon has had issues
with senior-level staff leaving.
During the debate, Carson described an ominous string of
threats and fantasized a doomsday scenario of terrorists detonating a nuclear
bomb, eliminating our power grid, setting off dirty bombs and unleashing ground
attacks in the streets.
While that sounds like a plot to a Michael Bay movie, that
scenario is technically possible but sounds a little off-the-rails. Perhaps
doomsday scenarios should be debated in the Pentagon, not a mainstream debate.
“The fact of the matter is, [Obama] doesn't realize that we now live in
the 21st century, and that war is very different than it used to be before,”
Carson said. “Not armies, massively marching on each other and air forces, but
now we have dirty bombs and we have cyber attacks and we have people who will
be attacking our electrical grid.”
Carson might have had his 15 minutes of fame, and his
polling has been in free-fall since the Paris attacks. This candidate isn’t
just weak on foreign affairs — he is quickly losing relevance and will fade into
Where is Sen. Marco Rubio?
Marco Rubio has virtually forgotten he is a senator of Florida and debate viewers may have forgotten he
was a contender.
Rubio wasn’t talking policy and was largely overshadowed
by the boxing match between Cruz and Trump. However, the junior senator tried
to bring attention his way with attacking Obama.
“I hate to interrupt
this episode of Court TV. But I think we have to get back to what this election
has to be about. OK? Listen, this is the greatest country in the history of
mankind. But in 2008, we elected a president that didn’t want to fix America.
He wants to change America. We elected a president that doesn’t believe in the
Constitution. He undermines it. We elected a president that is weakening
America on the global stage. We elected a president that doesn’t believe in the
free enterprise system.”
the debate came to its conclusion, Rubio engaged his competition on tax plans.
As both Cruz and Rubio got lost in the weeds, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie
reminded the senators the topic was about entitlements.
Rubio said he would be happy to talk about entitlements.
already had your chance Marco,” Christie responded. “You blew it.”
Florida senator had a quick rise in the fall, but has lost all of the polling
support he gained. He is almost back where he was at the end of the summer
coming in at a distant third with 12 percent average among national polling.
0 Comments · Friday, September 4, 2015
The Donald is the perfect antidote to perennial August news doldrums.
by Nick Swartsell
Posted In: News
at 10:13 AM | Permalink
I-75 north ramp from uptown to take five more years; Ohio Board of Ed ends 5 of 8 rule; Hillary goes unnoticed in Ohio Chipotle
Hello all. What’s up? Let’s dive right into the news today.If you live uptown and frequently need to hop on I-75 north, I have some bad news for you. It’s going to be another, oh, five years before the already years-old ODOT project to revamp I-75 makes it easier to access the highway from uptown. Let’s ruminate on that length of time for a minute. It’s an entire high school career plus a year of college. Or the amount of time it takes the average person to put 65,000 miles on a car. Or for some folks, multiple long-term relationships. The hang-up comes from a proposed connector bridge that will allow for easier access from I-74 to the area around Cincinnati State College. That construction is in the same area as the planned new northbound ramp, meaning the latter will have to be put off until 2020. That leaves uptown residents wanting to head north with the option of two complicated workarounds that probably add at least a few minutes to commute times. Happy driving y’all. • In more positive news, it sounds like the city’s July 14 parade for the MLB All-Star Game is going to be something else. Usually, these kinds of things are limited to a few pickup trucks full of ball players on the way to field from their hotels, but Cincinnati Reds COO Phil Castellini says this year will be different. Floats, music and other festivities inspired by our annual opening day parade will fill the mile-long parade route, which goes from the Westin Hotel downtown past Fountain Square to Great American Ballpark. The All-Star Game is a big deal for any city to land — estimated economic impact for the city is somewhere in the $60 million range.• Over-the-Rhine business course MORTAR will graduate its first class of entrepreneurs today. Locals William Thomas, Derrick Braziel and Allen Woods founded the group last year with a focus on increasing socio-economic diversity in the city’s startup culture. When you picture a startup entrepreneur, you might immediately think of a young white middle class male, which would be understandable since that demographic makes up a large percentage of entrepreneurs, especially in hot new markets like tech. MORTAR’s mission is to go beyond that, founders say, and to extend the opportunity to start a business to anyone in the city with a good idea. Tonight at Elementz, on the corner of Race and Central Parkway, the first class will take their ideas public during a series of presentations lasting from 6-9 pm. First year participants include Black Owned Outerwear founder Cam Means and soap maker Evie Cotton. • I knew y'all were smart. Cincinnati is among the most literate cities in the country according to a study by Central Connecticut State University President Dr. Jack Miller. Miller measured literacy in America’s 77 biggest cities by studying bookstores, libraries, newspaper circulation, education level and Internet usage to come up with his ranking. Cincinnati ranked 12th, just above Raleigh, N.C. and just below Portland, Ore. We are far and away the best Ohio city on the list — runner up Columbus ranked just 21st. Minneapolis took the top spot this year after a four-year run in the top spot for Washington, D.C., which finished second this time around.• The Ohio Board of Education voted yesterday to end the state’s stipulation that school districts have at least five of eight specialty positions in each of their schools. Those positions included librarians, music teachers and physical education teachers. The rule change has been hotly debated among educators and officials. Opponents say it will mean that students in many low-income schools will no longer be guaranteed arts, music and other important humanities education. Boosters of the rule change say it allows local school districts more autonomy with how they spend their budgets. • Is Gov. John Kasich’s budget proposal dead? Looks like its prospects are grim, especially when it comes to the tax boosts the governor suggested to make up for his proposed $5.7 billion in income tax cuts. The GOPers in the Ohio General Assembly love the cuts, but hate the offsets, which include a sales tax hike. State lawmakers are expected to tweak Kasich’s budget to cut about $1 billion in income taxes while forgoing the sales tax hikes and some other big measures in the budget. Kasich’s plan has taken fire from both the left and the right. Progressives point out that shifting the tax burden from income toward sales taxes puts a higher proportional burden on the state’s low-income workers and that cuts to taxes on businesses and the tax bills of the state’s top earners is a regressive move that favors the wealthy. Conservatives, on the other hand, say the sales tax hike would encumber businesses and slow the economy. Both the state House and Senate will have to vote to approve a final budget agreement. • Big news here: While Hillary Clinton was driving around in her Scooby Doo campaign van yesterday, she passed through Ohio and stopped for some Chipotle. Surprisingly, this news story says, no one in the Maumee, Ohio, Chipotle recognized her, probably because they were too focused on their double barbacoa double cheese double sour cream burritos. Dude, when I’m eating a burrito, the wailing ghost of James Brown could come in spitting fire and singing "Poppa’s Got a Brand New Bag" and I probably wouldn’t take much note, but then the wailing ghost of James Brown isn’t running for president in 2016 (unfortunately).• Finally, new revelations have surfaced in the shooting death of Walter Scott, North Charleston, South Carolina man, by police officer Michael Slager April 5. North Charleston police have released audio recordings taken immediately after the incident in which Slager tells his wife he shot Scott while the man was running from him and then later laughs about the adrenaline rush to a supervisor. Scott was black, Slager white. The incident is the latest racially charged police shooting to capture the nation’s attention in the wake of the shooting of Michael Brown by a white police officer in Ferguson, Mo., last summer.
by Nick Swartsell
Posted In: News
at 10:01 AM | Permalink
NCAA tournament is Ohio against the world; VA head McDonald: speed up services to homeless veterans; NKY Rep. wants to cut fed funding for transit projects
Hey all, it’s news time on this glorious, if rainy, Friday. Let’s go.It truly is Ohio against the world right now, at least when it comes to March Madness (which, if you’re anything like some of my friends, truly is your entire existence at this moment in time). The University of Cincinnati beat Purdue in a heart-stopper last night, Xavier bested Ole Miss and OSU beat Virginia Commonwealth University. Additionally, the Dayton Flyers pulled one out Wednesday against Boise State to make it into the tournament. They’ll be facing Providence College tonight. That’s great, but big challenges loom ahead: specifically, 8th-seed UC will have to face 1st-seed UK tomorrow. That’s going to be a tough game for the Bearcats. But let’s see what happens, right? While we’re talking basketball, here’s an interesting look at which local programs are making money for their universities, and which are break-even propositions. UC, for instance, spends as much on its basketball program as its team brings in, while Xavier turns a handy profit — the Musketeers’ hoops squad brings in more than $6 million a year. • Veterans Affairs Secretary and former P&G CEO Bob McDonald wants Cincinnati, along with other cities, to speed up the process of identifying and helping homeless veterans. McDonald visited local service agencies helping veterans yesterday and said he was impressed with the work those groups are doing, as well as the progress the city has made on veteran homelessness. But he also called for quicker turnaround when it comes to getting homeless veterans into housing, saying that the longer it takes to find them and get them on the right track, the less likely they will be to receive and utilize that aid at all. Mayor John Cranley, who joined McDonald on his tours of service agencies yesterday, is engaged in a national program to help vets, called the Mayor’s Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness. That initiative looks to end veteran homelessness across the country by the end of this year. • The Cincinnati Zoo recently made a national list of top places to travel if you want to see cool animals. Family Fun magazine publishes its annual rankings on the best places to travel in a number of specific categories, and Cincinnati’s Zoo ranked number eight in the animal attractions category. It ranked just below Disney’s Animal Kingdom, which is pretty impressive. It’s one more accolade for the zoo, which is widely recognized as one of the best in the nation. • U.S. Rep. Thomas Massie, who represents Northern Kentucky, has a GREAT idea for fixing the nation’s highway funding dilemma: strip funding for all other transit projects from the National Highway Trust Fund. Massie says the federal government’s grants for streetcars and other alternate forms of transit cost billions that could go toward building and repairing highways and bridges. Hm. Right. Except each of those projects keeps cars off the road, lessens America’s dependence on oil, may create economic development in the communities they’re built in and provide ways to work and recreation for the millions of Americans who don’t own cars. Which, as of yesterday, includes me. It’s also worth noting that only a small percentage of the Highway Trust Fund goes to transit projects, so cutting that funding would be a drop in the bucket. An alternative measure would be to increase the nation’s gas tax, which hasn’t been raised since grunge rock was cool the first time (that’s 1993).
• Former (and perhaps future) Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum was once again in the Greater Cincinnati area Thursday, fueling more speculation about his ambitions for the GOP presidential nomination. The former Pennsylvania senator stopped by a fundraiser in Montgomery hosted by the Northeast Hamilton County Republican Club. He avoided saying crazy stuff about religion (at least on the record) but did have some eyebrow-raising thoughts on the economy. Santorum is known to be a hardcore conservative when it comes to social issues, but there are signs he’s tacking moderate on the economy, a combination last tried by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee when he sought the GOP nomination in 2008. Santorum talked about how Republicans could capture the hearts and minds of America’s workers, backing policies that step away from the hardcore trickle down theories (tax cuts for the wealthy, decreased regulations) most recently advanced by the GOP. He revealed his presidential platform, should he run, would include supporting a small minimum wage increase — something few other Republicans seem willing to touch. He also committed something close to sacrilege for conservatives, saying the party needed to move on from Ronald Regan’s economic legacy and message. Santorum’s continued courting of the buckeye state (he was here visiting folks in Butler County a couple weeks ago for a religious freedom conference) comes ahead of his party’s national convention in Cleveland next year and is further evidence that the presidential race may be tightly focused on Ohio.• While we’re talking presidential hopefuls, let’s cross the spectrum for a minute and talk about Democrats, specifically their frontrunner for the presidential nomination, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. She’s been dominating the field on the Dem side, even though she hasn’t officially announced her candidacy. But that could be changing, according to a new poll from news organization Reuters. That poll shows Clinton’s support among Democrats has dipped by 15 points since mid-February, and that now about 45 percent of those identifying with the party say they’re sure they’ll vote for her. That’s still a bigger margin than any other potential candidate, of which there are very few, but the drop is alarming. Some of the dip may be explained by the recent high-profile flap over Clinton’s e-mail usage while secretary of state. After the New York Times reported earlier this month that Clinton used a personal account to conduct State Department business, she has been on the defensive explaining that move. Clinton has turned over tens of thousands of work related e-mails sent from her personal account, but also had other e-mails she claims were personal deleted. That’s led some to suggest she may be hiding information. Clinton’s use of a personal e-mail account appears to have fallen within State Department rules, which were changed after her tenure to require the Secretary of State to use a government account for accountability purposes. And I’m out. Tweet me (@nswartsell), e-mail me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or comment below. What do you think? Do you hold out any hope for UC against UK? Do you think we should raise the gas tax? Should I buy a car or wait for regional transit in Cincinnati to become so stellar I won’t need one? (I'm not holding my breath on any of these).
by Nick Swartsell
Posted In: News
at 11:19 AM | Permalink
Shocker: Boehner says redistricting reform not necessary; Gannett reaches out, gets spurned; Cleveland cop who shot 12-year-old was deemed "unfit" at last police job
Hello all, hope you’re doing well this morning. I’m having a bit of trouble getting started today, maybe due to CityBeat’s Bourbon and Bacon event last night. The party at Newport’s New Riff Distillery (which is amazing, by the way) featured nearly unlimited amounts of bacon-infused items. Bacon is one of my favorite things. I’m also a big fan of whiskey, which was also available in seemingly endless quantities. I’m still recovering. Anyway, news time. Usually, we think of the staunch conservatives in our state House of Representatives, bless their souls, as lovers of the smallest government possible. So it’s surprising that GOP state lawmakers have been working on a bill to pick cities’ pockets by reverting tax receipts usually going to municipalities to the state government. That bill got a little less pernicious yesterday, when a revised version passed the Ohio Senate. Mayor John Cranley touts the bill as a better deal for Cincinnati than it could have been. The proposal, which amends and allegedly simplifies Ohio’s tax rules for cities and other local governments, would cut the amount of money municipalities receive from businesses doing work in their jurisdictions. Many agree the current system is incredibly complex and makes it difficult for businesses to operate in multiple municipalities. But opponents of the original bill proposed by GOP lawmakers say the cuts to municipal tax receipts were too deep and, taken with other recent cuts to tax receipts, could hamper cities’ abilities to provide services. Cincinnati could have lost as much as $3 million a year from those cuts. The compromised bill minimizes some of those losses by keeping the municipal tax on items a company ships to places where it doesn’t have a storefront. • A slightly fictionalized Hamilton County Christmas play in one act:Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Neil:Hey guys, can I get a Harley? Maybe two Harleys? I want them for Christmas. They get better gas mileage than cars and the city taught us how to ride them.Hamilton County Commissioner Chris Monzel: I don’t know. Ask Greg Hartmann.Sheriff Neil: He wrote me a letter. He said I have to wait.Hartmann: Jim, I can’t believe you’re asking for this right now. You know money is tight and we can’t afford two Harleys. We’ve gotta tighten our belts, you know. Have you thought about a nice used Suzuki? Or maybe some bicycles? Red Bike is big right now.Sheriff Neil: But everyone else is asking for cool wheels, too.Monzel: We’ll just have to wait and see what Santa brings. We already gave you those cars you asked for. • Surprise, surprise: House Speaker John Boehner, who is camped out in his safely Republican district just north of Cincinnati, doesn’t want any changes to the way Ohio draws its congressional districts. He says that having one party dominate the process isn’t a problem because both parties have done so over the years and that everyone working on rule changes for redistricting should see what shakes out in Arizona. The Supreme Court is currently hearing challenges to that state’s constitutional amendment cutting the state legislature out of redistricting in favor of an independent panel, a similar arrangement to some proposals for reforming Ohio’s redistricting process. But let’s not be hasty about working to change the process that has created Ohio’s ridiculously gerrymandered districts, Boehner says."For 40 years the Democrat Party had the pencil in their hands, and for the last 20 years we've had the pencil," Boehner told The Enquirer yesterday. "When you've got the pencil in your hand, you're going to use it to the best of your advantage." • CityBeat contributor Ben Kaufman, who writes our "On Second Thought" column and "Curmudgeon Notes," tipped me off to this great exchange. Apparently, Enquirer parent company Gannett is reaching out to veteran journalists seeking help recruiting “leaders for the newsroom of tomorrow,” whatever that means. Gannett has been sugar-coating layoffs with this newsroom of tomorrow thing for a while and has even gone so far as to make reporters reapply for their jobs in a Hunger Games-esque battle for employment. A recruiter got a less than favorable response from three-decade veteran journalist Rick Arthur, who has been an editor at major newspapers and magazines. Arthur responds to the missive, which is, after all, not recruiting him but simply asking for help in recruiting others, with the following:“I would never refer anyone to Gannett, an organization that has such disdain for copy editors and that treats its employees so shabbily, and whose executives, publishers and editors willfully deny that there are problems while creating — for the second time in a decade — the laughably Orwellian 'Newsroom of the Future.'All the best, Rick”Ouch.• Finally, there’s continued anger around the nation over unarmed people, especially people of color, dying at the hands of police. Two brief developments: A grand jury in New York yesterday declined to indict Officer Daniel Pantaleo for his role in the death of Eric Garner, who Pantaleo put in a chokehold. Pantaleo died moments after the confrontation in an ambulance and can be heard on a video of the incident telling officers repeatedly he couldn’t breathe. The grand jury decision has sparked protests in New York City.In Cleveland, there are new revelations in the death of 12-year-old Tamir Rice, who police shot on a playground. The officer involved in that shooting, Timothy Loehman, was asked to leave another police force in the small town of Independence, Ohio, in 2012 after being deemed unfit to serve there. Loehman reportedly had an emotional breakdown on a shooting range and was “uncommunicative and weepy” during the incident, reports on his dismissal say. The report also calls his performance with a weapon “dismal.”
by Nick Swartsell
Posted In: News
at 10:05 AM | Permalink
Hand Up funding draws criticism; Greenpeace trial rescheduled; will Ferguson influence elections?
Hey all! We’re hustling this week to put together our election issue, which will be just overrun with everything you need to know before Nov. 4 or, heck, right now if you’re doing the early voting thing. In light of that, I’m going to hit you with a brief, just-the-facts version of morning news.• Some folks in the city, including advocates for the poor, are upset with the way Mayor John Cranley’s new job training program, called the “Hand Up” initiative, will be funded. That initiative is getting some of its funding from federal grants originally slated for other established programs in the city. Cranley says those programs aren’t the best use of the federal funds, and that his program will help up to 4,000 Cincinnatians reach self-sufficiency. Others, however, challenge that assertion.• Seven Greenpeace activists were scheduled to stand trial today for hanging a banner protesting P&G’s use of palm oil from the company’s headquarters in March. But that trial has been postponed until Jan. 20. Another activist who was also facing charges died Oct. 6. A ninth took a plea deal Sept. 8 and is awaiting sentencing. The remaining activists could face more than nine years in prison on felony burglary and vandalism charges.• Yet another development deal may be happening soon on Central Parkway in Over-the-Rhine. Have you ever driven down Central Parkway near Liberty Street and wondered what the building that says Warner Brothers on the front was all about? Developer Urban Sites is considering turning the 40,000-square-foot historic building, which was used by the film company as a vault, into offices or apartments. • Democrat Senate candidate and Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes is still running neck and neck with Sen. Mitch McConnell in one of the country’s most-watched races. Recent polls put the two dead even, and, in a sign that folks who follow such things think she still has a chance, Grimes was endorsed by two of Kentucky’s major newspapers over the weekend. Both the Louisville Courier-Journal and the Lexington Herald-Leader have backed Grimes. McConnell’s challenger made a last-minute swoop through Covington over the weekend, showing up to hang out with a few dozen supporters at the MainStrasse Village Dog PawRade. • Let’s zoom out to the bigger picture on the Senate. This AP story explores how weak Republican governors in some states could hurt the party’s chances of taking back the Senate, which it desperately, desperately wants to do so it can keep President Obama from doing really communistic type things like making sure people have health care and stuff. • Finally, while we’re talking about elections, could the national attention focused on civil unrest Ferguson, Mo., spur greater black turnout in this midterm election? I normally don’t pay too much mind to the Daily Beast, but this article is thought-provoking.