No doubt, this is only the beginning for the ad war. But with campaigns and super PACs already zeroing in on Ohio, a September story by the Dispatch’s Hallett is looking prescient. He listened in to a speech by Karl Rove, the former senior political advisor to President George W. Bush who now leads the American Crossroads super PAC, and came away with this nugget for readers:

“Our objective is to be a strong presence in Ohio on the presidential contest, the Senate contest and wherever we might be needed in the House,” Rove said. “We raised $72 million last time (in 2010); our goal is to raise $250 million this time.”

Meanwhile, the Enquirer’s Wilkinson, in another column, reported that while the GOP candidates and the super PACS toss slings and arrows at each other on TV, the Obama camp’s ground game is up and rolling in Ohio. As of this week, no Republican had an organized, active campaign staff in the state.

But while having a solid grassroots organization is valuable for getting supporters to the polls, Wilkinson correctly notes that there’s more than good coordination that goes into a voter’s choice.

“But in the end, it’s about the issues, and about the candidates themselves,” he writes.

Words to live by for Ohio reporters over the next six weeks, and the months that follow. They must find the time to sort through the candidates’ rhetoric and the ever-present ads that will soon blanket the state, and to provide the truth-telling coverage voters need.

T.C. Brown covered government and politics in the Ohio Statehouse Bureau for The Plain Dealer of Cleveland for more than 17 years, and he has also written for other local, state and national publications. Brown is a founding partner in Webface, a social media communication company.