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What a day.

It started with this excellent post by Jeff at Ohio Daily Blog and ends with a full slate of MSM and blogger stories on Ohio Attorney General Marc Dann’s resignation.

The Video

The Live-blog – Pho-style

The Live-blog – Jill-style

Even solidly conservative Ohioans recommend against the scorched-earth tactics Ohio Republican Party Kevin DeWine is gesticulating about.

Plunderbund has a post with info on the new Interim Attorney General, Tom Winters.

The Cleveland Free Times’ Free Blog has a sensationalistic story up about a woman who allegedly had an affair with Dann in the late 1980s.

I was privy to rumors galore today – frankly, it was pretty sickening – not the rumors themselves but the pace of the emails with them and the range of what they alleged.  I didn’t research a single one, for a variety of reasons.

I actually didn’t sense Dann to be as contrite as I thought Eliot Spitzer was, but I do believe that he is relieved – he has got to be relieved in some way.  I still believe that he is facing a much harder challenge, and more pain, by going home and doing what he must to salvage, repair and continue on with his family and home life.  But we really do only have one life to live – seriously.  No job, title or threat is worth screwing all that up.

I thought Ted Strickland spoke at a perfect pitch in general and in response to the questions.  Again, people should enjoy underestimating him, because four out of five times, he’s still going to come out on the right side of it all.

As for what’s next, the impeachment articles most likely will be dropped very soon, but the inspector general investigation that began today with a raid and seizure of computers from the AG’s offices will continue.  There was no deal related to dropping them (and Strickland said no other kind of deal related to anything else either).

Tom Winter, a deputy in the office, will become interim AG – I don’t know if that’s interim or acting.  But Strickland can appoint someone to fill the role through to January 2009, though in November, there will be an election to fill the AG post through January 2011.

With Marc Dann’s departure, I am ceasing operations of The Daily Dann.  There’s just way too much else going on and there’s an appointment and an election to consider.  Never a dull day in the heart of it all.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 10:38 pm May 14th, 2008 in Gender, Government, Marc Dann, Media, Ohio, Politics, Scandal, Ted Strickland, Women | 10 Comments 

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Ben, I love you, man, but Ohio Republican Party Deputy Chair Kevin DeWine is making you look…something re: who is doing only what is politically expedient. God forgive DeWine because what goes around comes around. Especially within those seven deadly sins. You cannot expect and demand that others take the right road and the high road when you yourself are willing to have you party win by exuding such disgust. He’s got some serious temperament issues.

From the Port Clinton News Herald:

Ohio Republican Party Deputy Chairman Kevin DeWine released the following statement on Attorney General Marc Dann’s resignation:

“This embarrassment is far from over. Marc Dann’s resignation is overdue, and the investigation into his mismanagement and corruption must continue.

“We’ve spent the past 15 months pointing out that Marc Dann was not suited to be Ohio’s attorney general, and now that it’s politically expedient the Democrats finally decided to join us.

“The first priority right now is restoring the integrity of the attorney general’s office. We will then begin the process of identifying a Republican candidate who will make Ohioans proud of their attorney general again.”

One of the reasons Governor Strickland’s ratings are as high as they are is because he projects a combination of compassion and conviction. He is cautious and does not rush to judgment, he is humble when necessary and speaks his mind without being terrified of what everyone else says. He may not always move far enough or quickly enough, but he recognizes people as being humans.

Once again, the ORP is in danger of appearing to lack all sense of humanity. DeWine is acting like a merciless bully who is only out for his own gain at the expense of others. I don’t glad dance, but he really should be thinking twice about his strategy and the risk of loss from it in a bigger way than the GOP is already poised to lose.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 7:21 pm May 14th, 2008 in Campaigning, Democrats, Elections, Government, Marc Dann, Ohio, Politics, Republicans, Scandal, Statehouse, Voting | 8 Comments 

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From the Ohio Channel, video of the press conference earlier this afternoon with former Ohio Attorney General Marc Dann and Ohio Governor Ted Strickland.

I’ll see if I can find a transcript as well.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 6:18 pm May 14th, 2008 in Announcements, Democrats, Gender, Government, Marc Dann, Media, Ohio, Politics, Scandal, Women | 3 Comments 

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What can I say? It’s been a busy day.

Check out Scott’s transcription of Ohio Governor Ted Strickland press conference which followed Marc Dann announcing his resignation.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 5:58 pm May 14th, 2008 in Blogging, Democrats, Gender, Government, Marc Dann, Ohio, Politics, Scandal, Ted Strickland, Women | Comments Off 

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 5:06 pm May 14th, 2008 in Politics | 2 Comments 

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You should be able to see the video here at least for a little while.

Watch live here. More soon.

You can read a bit here.

Tom Winters, the first assistant AG will takeover for now.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 4:59 pm May 14th, 2008 in Announcements, Gender, Government, Marc Dann, Ohio, Politics, Scandal, Ted Strickland, Women | Comments Off 

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Truly could not pick a better representative. From Ohio Daily Blog:

I’m proud (and rather overwhelmed) to report that I have been selected to be a part of the DemConvention State Blogger Corps, meaning that I will function as Ohio’s official blogger at the Democratic National Convention in Denver on August. I will be stationed on the convention floor, with the Ohio delegation, to represent our state in the DNC’s offical effort to bring new eyes, ears, and voices to the final stage of the Democratic nominating process.

Read the entire list of chosen blogs, state by state, here. Congrats to Tim at Crack the Bell (South Carolina). He came to Cleveland for the debate back in February and it was great fun exchanging emails with him, working to help him get here as the process for credentials unfolded. There are a few other names you’ll recognize, many you won’t.

I have no idea how many from Ohio applied, but according to Howard Dean’s statement, more than 400 applied for the 50 states and multiple territories. That week of the convention coincides with my kids’ first day of school and two out of three will be in new schools. I must say it’s been great reading the different blogger opportunities being offered through different networks I’m in (BlogHer and The Moderate Voice and The Media Bloggers Association included), but I’ll have to sit this one out.

Again, congratulations to Jeff. He works so damn hard – as do many of Ohio’s political bloggers, and I know from knowing him just how seriously he takes his charge. Thank you, Jeff.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 2:31 pm May 14th, 2008 in Blogging, Democrats, Elections, Government, Media, Ohio, Politics, Primary, Tech, Voting | 15 Comments 

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I just link to it:

Alas, poor Dann, we know him well now and fondly might we recall him later if he hasn’t already resigned by this writing.

But Ohio Attorney General Marc Dann is less the stereotyped Frat House “Comedy of Errors” in his rented condo and more the stormy center of Will Shakespeare’s “The Tempest.”

Actually, it’s like many a stageplay, plot, characters, quotes and titles of the Bard’s montaged tragicomedies of illicit and illegal woes.

Now ’tis writ of AG Dann that he is state’s chief law enforcer of all but perhaps himself as blasphemous. Now ’tis said his top staffers were asked of truth but invented their version of it.

Dann, at 46 and as a former junior senator who ousted his female predecessor, is one of the youngest of Ohio’s statewide elite and elect in such stuff as dreams are made of.

It ’tis bad enough now about AG Dann and his now-banished two right-hand men who rented that three-bedroom condo, with Dann the landlord.

Now ’tis alleged they used the condo but for the Falstaffian fest, the off-colored word in text message and male approach too touching close to a visiting aide on the distaff side.

You can read the script at the News-Herald.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 9:33 am May 14th, 2008 in Politics | 1 Comment 

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White Hat Management operates schools in several states.  In Florida, its been in the news quite a bit.

Today, reports:

Life Skills Center, the troubled charter school in Lakeland, has been given a one-year “probationary contract” with the Polk County School District to improve its standing with the district.

The school that helps dropouts pass the FCAT and earn a high school diploma must provide more money to classrooms, and its board of directors must provide constant oversight, according to a two-page document written by Carolyn Finch, senior director of the Office of Magnet, Choice and Charter Schools.

If Life Skills fails to improve, the district will likely cut ties with the school.

Read the rest of the article for the full context, but basically, it sounds like they take the money and run, sometimes they run a program people like, as noted in the article, but they also run from providing the oversight the customers – you know, taxpaying parents and their kids – deserve.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 9:10 am May 14th, 2008 in Business, Education, Government, Youth | 5 Comments 

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I don’t use the word “embattled” lightly. I wrote about it a great deal last fall in Wide Open and on WLST in relation to a religious argument that Christians in the United States are an “embattled minority” (someone else’s description, not mine).

You want to see embattled? Marc Dann is embattled. What happened all day yesterday? That’s embattled.

Few Ohio papers have avoided monolithic characterizations of the happenings at the Ohio Attorney General’s office over the last two weeks. Few if any have drawn attention to the blatant sexism and the issue of sexual harassment and employment discrimination that has led first, to many of the actions upon which we first focused, and second to the ensuing creation and maintenance of the hostile work environment. Rumors about which I know nothing other than what I read on the screen imply that there’s a wealth of other damning behavior beyond what’s already been presented and even accepted as true by Marc Dann.

Although this morning’s Canton Repository editorial doesn’t say anything about the sexism, its tenor captures the scurrying of signals that Marc Dann’s neural pathways must be trying to manage right now. With great emphasis on how the desperation is a result of his own actions.

Many sincerely sad things happen in this world, things we can’t explain. Marc Dann’s behavior really isn’t one of them. Not even his refusal to step down, say he’ll step down if he gets a concession that would stop his anxiety over already done deeds, and then, again, not step down.

I differ with some bloggers about the glad dance because there’s nothing glad about this. Dann did what he did (and we don’t really even know what that is yet). As voters, as Ohioan residents, we do what we do. The Internet has made it easier to voice our reactions and collect them, so that the touchstone for the court of public opinion is a little bigger than just the people in charge in Columbus.

But do not for a minute believe that this isn’t and hasn’t been a lose-lose situation. What’s compounding that feeling is the failure of Marc Dann to let Ohio move on, specifically, to let Democrats move on. It feels as though he wants to exact retribution for his misdeeds on the voters who supported him in the first place – as if to punish us for having believed in him and therefore leading him to this point. I imagine he also feels a lot of anger, and fear. And I imagine that there are some in Columbus who aren’t treating this situation with the detachment necessary so as not to infect it with all kinds of other emotions that aren’t in the best interests of Ohioans.

In the end, thought, it comes back to Marc, not the voters who supported him and who have lost trust in him. How could we not want to see him succeed? I know I have.

The scurrying signals evidence an immaturity on Marc’s part about decision-making, the consequences of his decisions and the impact they have on those beyond himself and his family. And Marc has admitted as much in regard to perhaps not being as prepared as he needed to be to take over the role as Ohio’s lead lawyer.

What to do, what to do.

Marc has to resign. If we think it’s all about him right now, just wait until he is finally no longer in office and really must make it all about him and getting healthy. This is all a distraction from the excruciating and painful work that faces him in his personal life. But the choices he’s made since Friday, April 25 when the Espy report was released have compounded the difficulty of that personal work with the intractable, but reasonable and understandable desire of many Ohio voters and the Ohio legislature to continue to investigate what the hell was going on in the AG’s office.

Marc has described himself as rolling up his sleeves and getting to work. But he needs to go to a different kind of office to get the work done that he needs to do. As soon as possible, for everyone’s sake.


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By Jill Miller Zimon at 6:34 am May 14th, 2008 in Gender, Government, Marc Dann, Media, Ohio, Politics, Scandal, Voting, Wide Open, Women | 12 Comments