OK, ladies and gents, here are my views (for what they are worth, and no smartaleck comments, MH or MD)on Ken Blackwell and the TEL issue. Folks, politics is the art of the deal. Some have called it the art of compromise, but I hate that word. It is the art of the deal. Ken Blackwell wants to be Governor. Conservatives, I hope, want him to be governor. I believe he has a great agenda laid out for Ohio. Most conservatives, I think, believe he has a great agenda. However, many local government types didn't like the local govt. language in the TEL, and neither did Tom Blumer. I questioned it, as well, but wanted to see how it played.
Ken Blackwell got a victory today. I hate to break it to those who are crying about the demise of the TEL. Ken Blackwell basically got the Republicans in the GenAssembly to promise through legislation, to curb their spending. He basically got them to paint themselves into a corner. By getting them to do it, if they break the law or modify it, then Governor (God Willing) Blackwell will be in a position to call them on the carpet and to push for TEL from the voters, citing the politicans as breaking their promise.
And, he eased the concerns of those in local government who would support Blackwell but for the TEL. He eased the Petro vote. However, he did not abandon his principles. He manuevered the spenders into a corner, and if/when he wins in November, he will be holding the cards. Should the GenAssembly not honor their promise, he has the TEL on standby. If they honor it, then he has produced a nice coalition that has been brought to task on the issue of spending.
To me, while it is not what is ideal to some conservatives, it is a win-win. He looks like a moderator, he gets what he wants, and he will have more leverage down the road.