Over at Race42012, Adam Brickley has a good post up on Jim Renacci, the conservative Republican hoping to oust liberal Rep. John Boccieri in Ohio's 16th Disrict.
As Brickley notes, conservatives have been obsessed with a hand full of high-profile campaigns, but "our biggest victories in the next few years are not going to come in those glitzy races. Instead the new Republican majority is likely to be built on the backs of new Republican congressmen who manage to upend the lesser known members of the Democratic caucus."Brickley also goes on to say that mayors (Renacci is a former mayor) often make good leaders because,
"... municipalities have to deal with all of the garbage deemed too trivial for state and federal governments, they’re the closest to the people, and they are under far more pressure to provide efficient services. Every pothole needs to be filled, every drainage ditch needs to be maintained. and if every i isn’t dotted and every t crossed - the mayor has to deal with it. So, as a foreign-policy focused guy myself, I have great admiration for anyone who can spend years mucking around the minutiae of local govenrnance.
Jim Renacci not only mucked around in the minutiae, he apparently thrived in it – cutting two million dollars in expenses, balancing the 80 million dollar budget, and not raising taxes a penny to compensate. That, my friends, is solid conservative governance – and that’s why we need more people like Mayor Renacci in Washington."
Renacci's also a successful businessman who owns (among other things) three Harley-Davidson dealerships in the Columbus area, and the Columbus Destroyers, a team that is part of the Arena Football League (which is currently restructuring).
... But can he win?
John McCain carried Ohio's 16th district in 2008 -- and 2010 promises to be a much better year from Republicans. Moreover, if top-of-the-ticket Republicans like John Kasich (who is running for Governor) and Rob Portman (who is running for U.S. Senate) do well, Renacci's chances go from good to excellent.