Ohio voters didn’t just hand Senate Bill 5/Issue 2, Gov. John Kasich’s signature anti-union law, a major defeat at the polls in November—one poll suggested voters would hold support for the law against politicians in upcoming elections. The Obama campaign apparently thinks the state’s voters, or at least the public workers among them, are holding to that, using Romney’s “110 percent” support for Senate Bill 5 in a new web video featuring a teacher, fire fighters, and a police officer linking Romney’s agenda, and his desire to have fewer teachers, fire fighters, and police, to Senate Bill 5.
“If Gov. Romney becomes president, then Issue 2 becomes a nationwide problem,” a retired fire fighter, whose son is also a fire fighter, says. According to another fire fighter, “Mitt Romney is the same group of people that came to Ohio and brought us Senate Bill 5, and he’ll do it at a national level.”
It’s a powerful pitch to public workers—to fire fighters, teachers, and police such as the people appearing in it. But it’s also a reminder to other viewers of their allegiance to and connections with the people who Senate Bill 5 directly attacked, recalling issues that were powerful in the campaign against the bill. “A key to Issue 2 was safety, not only for the fire fighters and the cops, but also safety for the people they serve,” as the retired fire fighter points out.
Romney is counting on the good old divide and conquer to work, making private sector workers resent the alleged high pay of cops and teachers, librarians and road crew workers, and forget that they want their kids educated, their roads without potholes, their fires put out. The Obama campaign is asking people to remember that they’re connected.