It's always hazardous to analogize too aggressively from one election to another. But the scale of the union-led victory Tuesday in the drive to repeal Republican Gov. John Kasich's anti-collective bargaining legislation in Ohio is bound to encourage Democrats who want President Obama to pursue a class-conscious populist appeal in 2012.
The referendum repealed legislation that the Republican State House and Senate approved without a single Democratic vote and that Kasich signed last March; the bill sharply curtailed the collective bargaining rights of public employees (including police officers and fire fighters, who are often exempted from similar Republican bills), and imposed cutbacks on pay and benefits. Overall, just over three-fifths of voters on Tuesday backed the repeal, in a prototypical swing state where Republicans swept in 2010.