Campaigning seriously since last year, Portman has devoted large chunks of time to doing what all politicians claim to do -- and what serious policymakers really do: listening. That has given him an impressive understanding of the issues, especially those related to the economy, that trouble Ohioans.
In branching out beyond the comfort zone of his old congressional district and his party's southern Ohio stronghold, Portman has in many ways duplicated what Ohio's soon-to-be senior senator, Sherrod Brown, did four years ago in his return to the statewide stage.
The comparison to Brown may unsettle admirers of both men. Portman's approach to most issues is as predictably conservative as Brown's is liberal. But for all the focus on Capitol Hill ideological gridlock, a lot of a senator's work involves seeking practical solutions to specific local concerns. That starts with listening. If Brown and Portman can put their partisan differences aside -- and Portman's House record and temperament suggest he can -- they could be useful allies to advance Ohio interests.
Portman also would serve the state well if he resists -- as Voinovich sometimes did -- the siren call of blind party loyalty. Simply opposing every idea from the Obama White House or its Democratic allies is no way to govern. If elected, Portman needs to be a responsible critic -- one who offers meaningful alternatives and tries to discover common ground on issues such as containing health care costs or trimming the federal deficit. The way he has run his campaign -- in an old-school "senatorial" fashion -- offers hope that he would do just that.
Even a few months ago, we might have said the same about Fisher. But Fisher's campaign for the Senate -- an effort we supported in his primary against Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner -- has been a profound disappointment.
While considering the above PD endorsement of Portman, please be mindful that Lee Fisher, at a recent fundraiser, stated he supports the DREAM Act and Immigration Reform (AKA: Amnesty).
Plus, while many of us were honoring the fallen from the terrorist attacks on 9/11 -- candidate Fisher was out hosting a fundraiser instead of remembering this fateful day in our country's history.
This post is not a CTPP endorsement of any candidate.
We encourage everyone to be a free-thinking, sovereign-minded & educated voter.