By John Mitchel
RE: “Hobson always put jobs first during 18-year tenure,” by Sherrod Brown, Dayton Daily News, December 27, 2008. U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown for as long as I can remember was a voice from the wilderness that spoke the truth on the North American Free Trade Agreement. He even had the courage of conviction to disagree on the issue with fellow Democrat Bill Clinton. But now that Brown and other NAFTA opponents are proven right by the “giant sucking sound” of jobs gone offshore, I’m disappointed he would try to rehabilitate the tarnished image of lame-duck Congressman, Dave Hobson. For Senator Brown to deal in glowing absolutes on Hobson’s pitiful record on job growth in the 7th Congressional District is unbecoming to the junior Senator from Ohio.
However Hobson has improved the job prospects for one sector of our economy, namely his special interest campaign contributors. Take for example his advocacy in steering $1.9 million in un-bid, taxpayer funded contracts toward the Dayton Development Coalition (DDC) which in turn noncompetitively awarded much of the work to The Greentree Group, a Beavercreek support contractor and Paul Magliochetti and Associates (PMA Group), a Washington lobbyist. Federal Election Commission records show that Greentree, PMA and DDC employees donated tens of thousands of dollars to “Hobson for Congress” before, during and after the 2003 sweetheart deal between Greene County Republicans and the DDC. It’s tragic that Senator Brown would offer a parting platitude to a politician who was part of the problem instead of one who recognized a failed policy and acted to correct it.