Reclaim November Ohio!

The Jefferson Action Voters Guide rates the two candidates for U.S. Congress in Ohio's 16th District. Jim Renacci (R) and Betty Sutton (D) both met with a group of typical Ohio voters, selected at random and representative of the district in age, race, gender, education and political affiliation. This Citizens Election Forum considered each candidate's position on three key economic issues: weak economic growth, unemployment and the federal deficit. They also rated how well the candidates addressed these issues in their campaigns. The forum rated the candidates' solutions for each issue in two areas: Quality of Solution and Likelihood of Success. The grades run from 1: Weak to 5: Strong.
A full .pdf version of the Voters Guide is now available



About Our Voters Guide


[/raw]The Jefferson Action Voters Guide is the work of 45 of your fellow Ohioans. We are residents of Congressional District 16. We live in Canton, Medina, Parma Heights, Wooster, Canal Fulton, Uniontown and everywhere throughout the district. We are steelworkers, nurses, financial planners, students, secretaries. We are Republicans, Democrats and Independents.

We gathered for a total of 10 days – more than 2,200 hours – as a group to study the important economic issues facing Ohio. We listened to experts and advocates from all sides. We discussed and debated different approaches to three key issues: weak economic growth, unemployment and the federal deficit. We learned about stimulus versus austerity. We wrestled with the impact of healthcare costs. We talked about how to keep American jobs from moving overseas. We examined the role of taxes. From these discussions we compiled an issue guide, and a criteria for evaluating congressional candidates.

We all know how modern politics work. Campaigns spend millions of dollars bombarding voters with TV attack ads. Instead of telling us what they would do to solve these problems, they simply tear down their opponent. Meanwhile, we the voters often are too busy with our own lives to pay close attention to the issues.

This group was given an opportunity to carefully consider these important questions. And we were fortunate to have the cooperation of two remarkable public servants: U.S. Representatives Jim Renacci and Betty Sutton.

Rep. Sutton and Rep. Renacci each met with our group for an in-depth discussion of our three key economic issues. In face-to-face meetings, we were able to get beyond soundbites and slogans for an honest look at where each candidate stands on weak economic growth, unemployment and the deficit. We also met with their campaign managers and discussed how well they addressed these issues during the course of the campaign.

The Jefferson Action Voters Guide is our assessment of the candidates’ positions. We rated their policies in two areas: How well do their solutions address the problem? And what is the likelihood for their policies to succeed, if enacted into law? We also rated how well they addressed our key issues in their campaigns.

This Voters Guide is the work of 45 of your neighbors. We put our minds and our hearts into it. It’s our honest judgment of two people who hope to represent you in the United States Congress.

We hope you will find it useful as you exercise your highest duty as a citizen: casting a vote in a free and fair election.




We greatly appreciated the opportunity to participate in this unbiased, non-partisan process of citizen involvement.

We applaud Congressman Jim Renacci and Congresswoman Betty Sutton for taking part in this extraordinary event. In the midst of a busy campaign, they made time to talk with a group of ordinary Ohioans about the important issues we face. We thank them for engaging in this display of open communication between the people and their elected representatives.

Our experience has showed us that it’s possible for ordinary Americans to come together and make important decisions based on the facts and the honest exchange of ideas. Though we all come from different political backgrounds, we put aside those differences and based our assessments solely on what we learned from the experts, on our own discussions and on what the candidates told us face-to- face.

We had the rare opportunity to study the important issues facing Ohio in depth and to talk to the leaders who seek to represent us in the United States Congress. We share our assessment with you in the hope that it will be useful to you as you make your voting decision.