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The lieutenant governor is the afterthought of Ohio politics. Little attention is paid to the No. Two in state government. Candidates for the post are usually selected in order to balance the ticket rather than on issues. The usual white male nominee for governor needs a woman or better yet a Black woman.

I am stepping forward to break the mold by offering to be a candidate for lieutenant governor based on my stands on issues important to Ohioans.

This month I will offer the Hartman Platform on education issues. In future columns I will detail my stands on other issues.

The first plank in my platform changes the taxpayer subsidies for state-assisted colleges and universities. It could save hundreds of millions annually. I would change the system to provide tuition subsidies based on the normal time is takes to earn a degree. For instance, a student seeking an associate degree will receive subsidized tuition for two years. After that, the rate without the subsidy will be charged. Similarly, bachelor's degree students will receive a subsidized rate for four years. After that, full price will be paid.

The second plank in the Hartman Platform will forbid state-assisted universities from covering the massive deficits that their athletic departments are running up. All the major universities in Ohio, except one, are subsidizing their athletic programs to the tune of $10 million to $25 million a year. It adds up to $200 million annually.

Ohio State University, thanks to the generosity of Ohioans, takes in $160 million a year through athletics and runs a sizable athletic surplus. OSU should kick $50 million back to the state government each year.

The savings from the above two planks would equal nearly $1 billion annually, just the amount of money the state government needs to balance its books.

Fully funding public K-12 education is the third plank in the Hartman Platform. If any money is left over, it could be used to support high quality charter and non-profit schools. Under no circumstances would tax money be used to support for-profit schools. Boondoggles like ECOT – which may stand for "EEEE Caught" – would get zero.

The fourth plank in the Hartman Platform would restrict testing of schoolchildren to two days a year. Teachers would be free to teach, not test. And teachers would determine what constitutes meeting graduation requirements, not politicians and bureaucrats.

Implementing universal pre-school for all 4-year-olds would be the fifth plank.

The sixth plank in the Hartman Platform would require all Ohio high schools to hire qualified journalism instructors, offer journalism classes in the 11th and 12th grades, and regularly publish a school newspaper in print and online in order to help students to learn about freedom of the press, freedom of speech and how to be good citizens.

Next month: more planks in the Hartman Platform for lieutenant governor.

Ohio Political Ranker: Volume 5

Welcome to Volume 5 of the ColumbusMediaInsider Ohio Political Ranker. Each month I will rank the candidates for Ohio governor in 2018. My criteria include: wealth/fund-raising capability (it will take $50 million to win the governorship), integrity, charisma, name recognition, key issues and appeal to small town/rural voters. 


                1. Dennis Kucinich. The public education authority.

                2. Connie Pillich. She's everywhere.

                3. Betty Sutton. Adding endorsements

                4. Nan Whaley. Not breaking through

                5. Andy Ginther. Columbus mayor taking on TrumpCare.

                6. Zach Space. Wants to be auditor. Why not governor?

                7. Richard Cordray. Wants to be governor. Better to run for AG.


                1.  Rob Portman. Could switch jobs with Kasich.

                2.  J.D. Vance. Good news: On NBC. Bad news: With Megyn Kelly.

                3. Mike DeWine. Tired merchandise finally announces.

                4. Jon Husted. County chairs like him

                5. Jim Renacci and Mary Taylor. Also-rans.


Governor John Kasich's faux best-seller "Two Paths" was languishing at No. 4373 on sales list. It took the path to the "remainder" recycling bin.

Kasich's web site was hacked. Maybe if he were in Ohio more often paying attention instead of secretly burning state cash traveling outside Ohio, the state would have a better firewall.

Kasich says he wants to save some parts of Obamacare, but he cannot stop the right-wingers in Congress he helped create through the Republican gerrymander of Ohio.

Now that the Wolfe family no longer owns the Dispatch, the paper is investigating the dubious TV ad spending by ECOT. The Wolfe family still owns Channel 10 and continues to rake it in.

Dispatch editor Alan Miller talks a good game and tells audiences he's got the same values they do. He downplays that he was the Wolfes' No. Two in the newsroom for all those years when they were using the news columns and editorial pages to propagate their narrow right-wing point-of-view on central Ohio. Can we trust him now?

Wright State University has a $40 million budget deficit and Ohio State University just committed $40 million paying off the former men's basketball coach, hiring a new one and all his assistants. What does that say about the value system of O-HI-O?

WOSU-TV's Columbus On The Record has moved to the 5 p.m. Sunday scheduling ghetto and is pre-empted half the time. What are the station managers thinking?

The New York Times canned its public editor (ombudsperson) and is reducing its copy editing staff (quality control) at a time when the pressure to get facts right is growing. What are the Sulzbergers, who own the paper, thinking?               


                4-year degree

                4-year subsidy

                Works for me

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(ColumbusMediaInsider, copyright, 2017, John K. Hartman, All Rights Reserved)