This is a rising star in Ohio Republican politics. The Republican political establishment in that state has promoted him throughout his legislative career. Now he’s 49, Senate President, and term limited. I don’t know his next move. I suspect he wants to run against Democrat Sherrod Brown for the U.S. Senate in 2018. He’d be a perfect candidate.
Bill Fruth knows these people; he’s from Ohio, was a small town Mayor there when he was in his 20’s. Bill was the first person I talked to about the Reagan Initiative. I respect his opinion. He was intrigued, but cautious. He did not discourage me from pursuing it, but he wanted to keep quiet about it. I told him that I was going to try to sell it to state legislative leaders around the country, and he discouraged me from talking to Faber about it.
Unless he convinces me otherwise, I’m going to tell Faber about it next week, and ask for his help. He’d make a good national Co-Chairman of the Seattle Summit, except for his ties to Kasich. We don’t want to be seen as tied to any one Presidential hopeful.
Ohio is part of coal country. Not to the extent of West Virginia or Kentucky, but coal is big in Ohio. Faber’s number one political contributor is American Electric Power, which burns coal to generate 2/3 of its juice. AEP, along with every other coal burning power generator in the country, is in the crosshairs of the EPA. They want it to stop burning coal. Faber would love to be able to do something about that. With the Reagan Initiative, he can. He can be a leader on this issue, the kind of leader who gets rewarded with election to the United States Senate.
Faber totally gets Article V. When Fruth reached out to presiding officers around the country, including some Task Force Co-founders, for help in Wyoming, only Faber responded. He wrote a letter to Wyoming Senate President Nicholas the day he was asked. That spoke volumes to me.
Faber’s a very bright guy. Maybe he can tell me what’s wrong with the Reagan Initiative. Whatever he has to say, I’ll be listening very closely.
We’ll have an awards dinner the night of August 3rd, and we should have a guest speaker. I’m going to ask Kasich. He was on Meet the Press today, in top form. When he’s on, he’s really good. He’s inching toward running. I’d be shocked if he didn’t. He would be a very serious candidate, with a legitimate shot. He’s the only one in the field that I, personally, might prefer over Rand Paul. It depends on how hawkish he is in the Middle East. If he starts sounding like some of these other guys, all macho and kick ass, I couldn’t support him. Paul showed me some balls last night in New Hampshire. He goes on an antiwar tear, and pulls no punches. Kasich would have to show me he won’t fight a war for Israel before I could support him. We want out of the Middle East. We’ll guarantee Israel’s security, but beyond that, it’s not our problem. We don’t need their oil anymore. The Asians and Europeans do. Let them figure it out. If the Shia and the Sunni, and everybody in between, want to kill each other for the next hundred years that would be a great human tragedy. There are great human tragedies playing out all over the world. Let’s help out in some that don’t require us to go to war.
If Kasich can’t come to Seattle I’m going to invite Rand Paul. He hasn’t really pitched in on Article V the way Kasich has. But he’s all in. I’d like a chance to talk to Paul about the Reagan Initiative. I think it’s his cup of tea. What part of the Reagan Initiative wouldn’t he like? Politically, the down side to the Reagan Initiative is it’s a declaration of war on the environmental left. But if I’m a Republican, I want these crazy bastards screaming at me. I’d want them to come to my rallies, and try to disrupt them. I want to get picketed. I want these nut jobs throwing tomatoes at me, or worse, preferably. So there is no down side politically. If you’ve got the balls.
When I ran for the Senate in ’82 no one knew who I was. I was a small time lawyer who’d been in the state eight years. I’m not really a very sociable guy. I stuck close to my family and a few of my drinking buddies. Outside of politics, I really didn’t know anybody. I’d never met the Republican candidate for Governor, Tom Fink, whose help I needed badly.
So I read in the paper that Fink and the Democrat, Bill Sheffield, are having a luncheon debate at the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce. This is a big deal, 500 or more people. Both these guys are former Presidents of the Anchorage Chamber. So I go and find out they’ll take questions from the audience. I get first in line at the mike.
Sheffield was running a TV ad all over the state, except Anchorage. It was called Rhode Island Red. It said Fink was the candidate of Anchorage, and Anchorage alone, while Sheffield was the candidate of all Alaskans. So I get to ask the first question, “Bill, you say you want to run a campaign that brings Alaskans together. How does that TV ad you’re running, Rhode Island Red, fit in with that strategy?”
It shook Bill pretty bad. He wasn’t real bright, and had a slight speech impediment, so he had a hard time saying anything. People in the crowd were starting to laugh. It was brutal.
I got that Fink endorsement.