Connie Pillich speaking in Portsmouth, Ohio (5 December 2017). Photo Credit: SOPM Media.
"Having a healthy Ohio is not just a quality of life issue, it is an economic issue, too. The only way I can grow the economy is to have a healthy workforce. I want to strengthen Medicaid in Ohio by requiring competitive bidding so that your dollars are spent the most effective and efficient way possible and I want to fight to maintain Medicaid expansion. If we lose Medicaid expansion, 700,000 Ohioans will lose their insurance — 26,000 are veterans, and a quarter of our hospitals will close. The economic impact on our state is going to be disastrous if we let Medicaid expansion go away. And every single Republican running for Governor will get rid of Medicaid expansion. I also want to make sure we redirect our resources to the police, our firefighters, our EMTs, the hospitals, the social workers, who are on the front-line fighting the opioid crisis. And I want to create a public option for healthcare. Let anybody buy Medicaid. Let anybody buy the state law makers’ insurance because when I’m governor I want people to have access to affordable care and I want it to be in every single county, no matter your zip code, and I also want them to have access to the same thing the politicians have because if it is good enough for them it is good enough for all of us."
-- Connie Pillich in Portsmouth, Ohio (5 December 2017).
Connie Pillich of Cincinnati brought her gubernatorial campaign to Portsmouth, Ohio, on Tuesday, December 5th. Pillich's visit came as part of her 88-county strategy, which has taken her into communities that too often are mistakenly written-off as being too red, too pro-Trump, too few blue voters to be worth the office-seeker's time. Pillich, however, understands that she will need not only every Democrat vote, but also those of the state's independent voters, progressives, and disaffected Republicans and others who are not comfortable inside the modern day Republican party. Her track record -- winning three elections to the Ohio House of Representatives in a red-leaning district -- suggests Pillich knows how to put together a winning statewide coalition.
As part of its voter education initiative, the Southern Ohio Progressive Movement organized the event as an informal luncheon at the Port City Pub on Chillicothe Street. Plans are underway for additional luncheons with other progressive-minded candidates for public office.