Liberal talk show host Ed Schultz is in Ohio this week, broadcasting his MSNBC program. The Ed Show. He was in Toledo last night with a program that featured Toledo congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (who could be representing a large chunk of Cuyahoga County after next year’s elections, thanks to the new crazy-quilt congressional district map) and Toledo Mayor Mike Bell, as well as an enthusiastic audience of working people brandishing signs advocating the repeal of Ohio Senate Bill 5. Kaptur spoke out against the union-busting measure while Bell spoke out in favor, saying it was essential to balance the city’s budget by slashing the pay and benefits of teachers, police officers, and fire fighters (Interestingly, Bell is a former fire fighter who is double-dipping).
Schultz is in Columbus tonight, with a show featuring Senator Sherrod Brown and Congresspersons Tim Ryan of Youngstown and Dennis Kucinich of wherever he needs to be from to stay in Congress. (He’s said he will take on Kaptur in a Democratic primary). One of Schultz’s favorite Ohio guests, State Senator Nina Turner, will also be on. The taping, taking place at 10 p.m. the Fire Fighters Union Hall, is open to the public.
A few weeks ago, Governor John Kasich held a public event offering to negotiate with labor on SB 5, leaving empty chairs for labor leaders who didn’t show up to barter after the fact on a signed law. Schultz is returning the favor. He challenged Kasich to come on his show and defend the bill, leaving an empty chair last night in Toledo. He plans to do the same in Columbus. Kasich, meanwhile, was in New York, taping the Sean Hannity Show on Fox. — Anastasia Pantsios