Mike the Mad Biologist

The GOP Faux Populism Con

If a Democrat said something as half as derogatory about someone’s background, he or she would be pilloried non-stop as an ‘out-of-touch, liberal elitist.’ But if John Kasich, former Republican Congressman who is running for governor of Ohio, is any guide, IOKIYAR is still operative:

The first line of Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland’s campaign biography boasts the Democratic governor is “the son of a steelworker” who “never imagined he’d be able to go to college.”

Indeed, Strickland’s humble upbringing is just the type campaigns love to highlight, and never more so during an economic climate that still hasn’t shown signs for recovery for many Ohioans.

But the campaign of Strickland’s Republican opponent — former U.S. Rep. John Kasich — is causing a stir for attacking the same simple origins Strickland celebrates.

Kasich spokesman Rob Nichols said in a statement Tuesday Strickland is a poor manager of Ohio’s cities because the Democrat was raised “in a chicken shack on Duck Run.”

Apparently, Kasich’s campaign has made this claim more than once–this was not a ‘gaffe.’ Of course, it would be uncivil to note that Kasich, after leaving Congress, worked on Wall Street for Lehman Brothers.

Because that’s the typical experience of ‘real America.’

Kasich was forced to apologize, but, again, if a Democrat had said something like this, it would have been on the cable networks non-stop.

Comments

  1. #1 Ewan
    June 26, 2010

    If you read the quote in context, he didn’t say that it was *because* of where he was raised that he would be a poor manager. In fact from what I can see he didn’t really give a reason.

    I’m not saying this was an especially smart thing to do, I’m saying that the blog you quoted from attributed causation where none really was given.

  2. #2 Lassi Hippeläinen
    June 26, 2010

    Honestu fail in an election campaign? I’m shocked!
    http://failblog.org/2010/06/25/honesty-fail-2/

  3. #3 Jim Thomerson
    June 26, 2010

    One of my department chair colleagues was a steelworkers son, and union member. He worked in the mills all the way through his PhD. When asked about his source of support, he would tell people he had a US Steel scholarship. Me, I was raised on a little 2×4 ranch in Texas with no indoor plumbing. I do think your raising informs you in a way people raised differently are not informed.