Gov. Strick­land weigh­ing his job op­tions

Dayton Daily News - - LOCAL - By Laura A. Bischoff and Wil­liam Her­shey Colum­bus Bureau

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.

Staff photo by Lisa Pow­ell

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...

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