The same day outgoing Governor Ted Strickland, (D- Ohio), met with President Obama at the White House, his office issued the following statement:

"At a time when Republican leaders in Washington are only concerned with giving tax breaks to the richest people in our country without paying for them, I am urging Congress to stand with our struggling middle class and extend unemployment benefits for working people."

Strickland criticized his own party yesterday saying Democrats suffer from "intellectual elitism". In an interview with the Huffington Post, Strickland expressed his frustration over the debate by republicans in congress to extend the expiring Bush tax cuts for the wealthy at a time when so many Americans are out of work, saying "if we can't win that argument we might as well just fold up."

Governor Strickland narrowly lost reelection to former congressman John Kasich (R) despite the president's multiple trips to the Buckeye State on his behalf. In fact, Mr. Obama has visited Ohio more times as president than any other state. The bellwether swing state is key in any presidential election and without a sitting Democratic governor, winning Ohioans support in 2012 will be a challenge to the president's re-election.

The governor and president met in the Oval Office at 10:15on Thursday morning. Strickland was scheduled to meet with Vice President Biden as well. Both meetings were closed.