Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Yost Updates

Memorandum for Yost Campaign:
From: Matt Borges, Campaign Manager

Date: September 5, 2010

Re: Dispatch Poll Confirms Yost Lead

Labor Day marks the unofficial end of summer - and the unofficial start of the political season. Now that we're in the last two months of the 2010 campaign (with merely three weeks until early voting begins) it's important for us to evaluate where we stand.

The Columbus Dispatch has forecasted the results of statewide elections for decades - including correctly predicting the results of the 2006 and 2008 cycles. Today's Dispatch poll confirms the numbers we have seen in our own internal polling for the last few months, and that have not been disputed by anyone. Dave Yost is leading this race by a wide margin.

As we have seen in every other poll taken to this point, Yost is doing more than just "riding the wave" of Republican enthusiasm this year, he has a wider lead than ANY down ticket Republican candidate.
MATT SAYS: Don't Blame Me, I Wanted Dave Yost for Attorney General
His opponent, David Pepper, underperforms every other statewide Democrat.

Polling has shown that Yost leads Pepper in every media market. His lead in Southwest Ohio is proof that Pepper's record of high taxes and broken promises are known to voters in his home area.

Some important points in assessing this race:

Unions have upped the ante in the race for Auditor. Pepper reported another $50K in union contributions just in the past month, bringing the total invested in the Auditor's race by big labor to almost $600,000. This tells us that unions want this seat badly - and it is not because they're looking for an "independent" voice. They want the apportionment board, and they want an activist Auditor. It is up to us now to deny them what they covet.

More than just using the Apportionment Board to create seats for pro-union candidates, Dave Pepper would be a partisan Auditor who will create union-inspired roadblocks for every reform a Republican Governor and House and Senate would do to improve our state's economy,

As the Dispatch pointed out, ". . .polls taken before Labor Day, particularly for lower-profile races, can change dramatically, especially once TV ads hit the airwaves." Pepper still holds a sizeable cash advantage on Yost, so the results of the race could still change. However, Pepper isn't raising nearly enough to stem the Republican tidal wave and every poll taken has concluded that a properly funded Yost campaign will win, plain and simple. This has become our race to lose. We are ahead with a better candidate with a better message in what looks increasingly to be a Republican year. All it takes is the financial commitment to make sure Dave's voice can be heard by voters. We must re-double our efforts to ensure this important apportionment board seat, which will serve as an independent check on government throughout Ohio, stays in safe Republican hands. We cannot let the unions buy it.
Press Release: "Yost proposes greater oversight of stimulus spending"
(Columbus) - Candidate for Ohio Auditor Dave Yost today proposed a plan to more closely monitor the billions of stimulus dollars now being spent in Ohio. With billions more yet to be spent, Yost released the Interim Assessment and Real-Time Feedback proposal (here) today to strengthen the State Auditor's oversight of federal stimulus spending.

"The stimulus program has already been a disaster in so many ways," said Yost, "Now we must make sure the borrowed money already being spent doesn't make the situation even worse. We owe it to Ohio taxpayers - and the rest of the nation - to make sure this money is at least spent properly," said Yost.

Since the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) was signed into law in February 2009, the state of Ohio has applied for more than $8 billion in stimulus dollars for 90 different programs.

"The Auditor of State provides an independent audit of expenditures but the work of the AOS has traditionally been performed after a fiscal year has ended, as part of the annual single audit," Yost said. This means that problems are identified when it's too late to fix them. Yost proposed that the State Auditor begin risk assessments of individual programs during the fiscal year -- before the money is spent.

"The Auditor of State could essentially split the audit into two phases: a real-time assessment during the fiscal year, and then concluding work after the books are closed," Yost said.

This will help Ohio avoid problems faced by other states, where ARRA spending has overwhelmed the ability of government managers to control and account for the funds. In California, for instance, the financial records accounting for $2.7 million in weatherization funds were so poor that the Governor was urged to stop the program.

State Auditor Mary Taylor has begun using interim assessments in a limited context.

"The time has come to make them a standard protocol in this new period of ramped-up federal spending," Yost said.