In case you didn't hear the news, Mike Coleman dropped out of the race for Ohio's Governor this morning. Rumors had been swirling for a short while, but were quickly confirmed today.
This all but hands the primary victory to Congressman Ted Strickland, a good friend to my campaign last year, and someone whom I'm sure it will be a pleasure campaigning with in 2006. Strickland was the better man for the job on the day he entered, and Coleman's withdrawal was the wise and honorable thing to do.
But the inside story is much deeper than the pleasantries of the day. Coleman's campaign was in big trouble based on a failed field plan. He had excellent people surrounding him, but nobody was watching the henhouse in regards to the field plan. It was unfortunately outsourced to a company with a faulty business plan. The stories that I have personally heard are shocking and not at all what one would expect from a progressive Democrat, especially one running for such a high seat.
Mike Coleman is a good man, but wasn't going to have a chance with this field plan in place. He'll be back someday, but we can all be thankful that he is still the Mayor of Columbus, as he has turned that city around. Hopefully next time, he'll hire more wisely.
The lesson to any other Ohio candidate is simple...do your own field work. Outsourcing it is a huge mistake.