Gov. Strickland weighing his job options
COLUMBUS — You haven’t heard the last of Ted Strickland.
The Democratic governor who narrowly lost his re-election bid said that he plans to do anything he can to get President Barack Obama re-elected in 2012 and he hasn’t ruled out running for governor again in 2014.
Strickland, 69, said he is weighing job options for the near term and taking the advice of U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who told him to take his time in deciding his next career move.
“I don’t do well with downtime so I expect to be (busy),” Strickland said.
He said he is considering working on a health care initiative with the Bipartisan Policy Center, a nonpartisan group started by former senators and governors.
Read the full story on A6. The governor spoke with the Dayton Daily News for nearly an hour on Monday, reflecting on his time as governor and looking to the future.
Strickland named education reform and a new energy law as his top accomplishments in the governor’s office, but added that keeping the state steady and focused during the biggest economic recession in 80 years is his single greatest accomplishment.
Among his biggest regrets: seeing $400 million in federal passenger rail money earmarked for Ohio be sent to other states because his successor, John Kasich, doesn’t support the project, being forced to make funding cuts to human services and reappointing Tom Charles as the state inspector general.
Strickland said Charles engaged in an investigation of state Department of Public Safety Director Cathy Collins Taylor that was biased, unfair and factually incorrect.
The GOP-controlled Ohio Senate refused to confirm Collins Taylor’s appointment as public safety director and last week Kasich named Charles as his pick for the public safety job. Charles accused Collins Taylor of perjury, but Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien declined to bring charges.
Although Strickland has yet to leave office, Kasich is already working to unravel some of Strickland’s signature policies. When asked how that makes him feel, Strickland responded: “There will be a sharp contrast for people to evaluate in the near future, will there not be?”
He said he wouldn’t be surprised if Kasich’s political opponents didn’t collect video footage of railroad construction work under way in the states that received the $400 million originally earmarked for Ohio’s passenger rail service.
“I mean $400 million is a lot of money. It would create a lot of jobs,” Strickland said.
Strickland is reluctant to offer advice to Kasich, other than to surround himself with smart people who operate by the golden rule.
“One person cannot govern a state. It takes a team because the issues are so broad and complex. And there is some crisis every day. It may be localized but every day or nearly every day there is a crisis somewhere in this state,” Strickland said.
Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, shown speaking in Dayton at a November press conference announcing GE Aviation’s plan to locate a research and development center on University of Dayton-owned land. UD, GE, and the city of Dayton will sign the lease for the...