"Ohio" became a four letter word this election cycle. Between the heavy news coverage, endless candidate visits, and unstopppable political ads, Ohioans can't so much as view the latest hillarious cat-themed internet video without being bombarded with political mortars. Ohio was a key state in the election, every voter with a pulse knows that, and so every politician.
But what is really going on in Ohio? Is this a state that has grown fat and lazy off of the collective attention of a nation? IVN interviewed voters and volunteers at Ohio's polls on Election Day.
What was discovered is that Ohio, for the most part, votes purely on the issues. Despite attempts by both parties to sway voters based on their religious beliefs and the nature of their employment, not one of the people interviewed sited their religion or their job as a reason for their choice.
By far the most important thing to these voters was the economy. One note that has rung true for both parties and nearly all voters this election is that the people are desperate for a candidate that will improve our nation's financial situation. In Ohio this is especially true. One woman proceeded to wave her Starbucks "Let's Create Jobs" wristband around while commenting, "Let's hope we can get this fixed today." These people wanted jobs and financial security more than anything else this election.
The second factor they cited as being most significant in their voting choice was, surprisingly enough, foreign policy. One woman explained her passion for this issue by claiming that she, "Didn't want the world to blow up." These voters were informed, and they are just as concerned with what is happening overseas as they are about what is happening here. Candidates have pushed hard to make their platforms as simple as possible to attract voters without requiring much research on their part, but in Ohio the voting population does their homework. These voters did not make their decisions lightly.
While the issues may inform which candidate they choose in Ohio, once they choose they fight. When asked whether or not this election presented one clearly superior candidate the result was an almost unanimous yes. These people knew who they wanted and weren't ashamed to admit it. Representatives for the Democratic Party were passing out sample ballots just outside the polls, and when asked why they were there one of the volunteers informed me that, "My stance is that everyone needs to make up their own mind and it needs to be an informed decision." These voters were certainly informed. Clearly the millioins spent by both candidates on this state were worth it. One way or another, Ohio has made up its mind.
The long and short of it is that people in Ohio are just as sick of hearing about Ohio as the rest of the country, but they recognize that candidates are interested in them for a reason. So rest assured nation, Ohio knew it could very well determine the next President and voters did doing everything they can to make that decision as wisely as possible.