I know I’m probably preaching to the choir, but it’s worth saying anyway: If you haven’t done so already, get out there and vote. This election features a number of races that are crucial for our long-term viability as a region, particularly in regards to mass transit.
For Hamilton County Commission, we have Jim Tarbell, a streetcar advocate and tireless advocate of Over-the-Rhine, running a positive campaign against COAST-endorsed Chris “Son of the Suburbs” Monzel, who has defined his campaign by his opposition to the streetcar project. Although the streetcar is a city issue and the county commission is powerless to stop the project, it is crucial to have a pro-city voice at the county level in the person of Jim Tarbell.
At the state level, Governor Ted Strickland has been supportive of the much-needed 3C rail line serving Cincinnati, Columbus, and Cleveland, which will serve as the foundation for future high-speed rail service in Ohio. John Kasich has vowed to kill the project, even though it means sending $400 million back to the feds, which will promptly be spent in some other state.
At the federal level, Steve Chabot (OH-1) and Rob Portman (OH-Sen) have come out against the 3C project, and have explicitly stated that transit funding would not be a priority for them. Metro Cincinnati endorses Steve Driehaus (OH-1) and Surya Yalamanchili (OH-2) for the House of Representatives, and Lee Fisher for Senate.
The mainstream media has already decreed that today will be an electoral bloodbath for pro-transit candidates, and our own newspaper has endorsed a full slate of candidates who are actively crusading against Cincinnati’s best interests. Let’s prove them wrong, and put some egg on the face of the Enquirer’s editorial board while we’re at it.