Monday, July 18, 2011

Even more good news for Ohio's credit rating

My friend and fellow Ohio blogger, Tom Blumer, has a further update on the recently upgraded outlook for Ohio's credit rating, proving that Kasich's recent balanced budget is responsible for the progress.

...there’s an even better part to all of this.

That’s because a related story reports an event which happened back in January which apparently didn’t get a lot of attention (or it got past me, which has been known to happen). This event, and the July news above which has followed it six month later, blows away every last conceivable shred of a claim by Ohio’s left and Democrats that Ted Strickland was really, really making things better in the final year of his term.

To hear them tell it, Ohio’s improving economy is merely a continuation of all the grrrrrrreat work T-Shirt and Turnaround Ted did in 2010. Why, one deluded BizzyBlog lefty commenter informed me that Ohio’s recovery last year was the best since 1983. Then Uncle Sam’s GDP growth by state report came out. “Never mind.”

Anyway, the super-fun, deal-sealing nugget is contained in the final paragraph of last week’s Wall Street Journal’s story on the S&P upgrade (bold is mine):

S&P had lowered its outlook on Ohio in January, citing the state’s depletion of its budget stabilization reserve. More recently, the state has made progress balancing its budget through the 2013 fiscal year, easing pressure on the rating.

Translation: After four years of Ted Strickland’s stewardship, on his way out the door, S&P told him, “Here’s the final bill for the damage you’ve done, Ted. You’ve left the state in a mess. Don’t let the screen door hit you.”

The cutoff couldn’t be any clearer. Before John Kasich took office, Ohio was rapidly turning into a problem child. A mere six months later (with the usual “don’t get too cocky” caution), Kasich has engineered an impressive enough turnaround to warrant an upgrade from S&P.

Perhaps the Ohio that Kasich envisions is a state where most of us want to live after all.

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