In one week, Democratic and Republican voters will choose their candidates for the November election. That includes the selections for governor, the job coming open after eight years with John Kasich. The governor has his achievements, most notably, the Medicaid expansion. His tenure also frames a worthy debate for this campaign.

Fortunately, Innovation Ohio and Policy Matters Ohio, two think tanks, highlighted that discussion last week in unveiling their report “A Winning Economic Agenda for Ohio’s Working Families.” Now the hope is, the two primary winners will engage quickly and often.

Kasich and fellow Republicans have altered dramatically the state income tax, lowering rates by one-third. The effort began before the Kasich years. The governor joined with enthusiasm, in all revenues reduced $3 billion a year.

The question that belongs at the front in this campaign is whether Ohioans should reclaim part of that revenue to invest in priorities designed to elevate the whole. The two think tanks answer with an emphatic yes, reminding that the tax cuts haven’t delivered the economic boost promised.

What the tax reductions have done is aggravate income inequality. The poorest Ohioans and those with middle incomes today pay slightly more in taxes (a sales tax increase). Those with annual incomes above $360,000 pay on average $20,500 less.

This has happened as those at the top rungs have enjoyed rising incomes while wages for the poorest 30 percent have declined. Currently, seven of the state’s 10 most common occupations have an annual median wage of less than 130 percent of the federal poverty level for a family of three.

No surprise that Democratic candidates cite areas where they would direct funding, including universal preschool and free community college tuition. The two think tanks present a strikingly wide range of neglected priorities.

Among other things, they point to the absence of internet access for nearly 1 million Ohioans, the level of student debt (more than 1 million owing $58 billion), the lack of sufficient need-based college assistance and too little support for public transportation and child care to help working families.

Another feature of the past seven years has been the reduction in the Local Government Fund, $1.2 billion a year no longer flowing to cities, counties and townships, squeezing budgets for neighborhoods, downtowns and services.

The big political challenge is how to raise the money for investment, the dreaded T-word, taxes. The two think tanks propose closing the ill-conceived loophole for pass-through income and increasing tax rates for the wealthiest Ohioans, retrieving around half of the tax cut revenue.

Among the Democrats, Joe Schiavoni and Dennis Kucinich talk about ending the loophole (almost $1 billion a year). The Democratic winner must confront honestly the revenue question, if just to seek leverage on what will be a Republican legislature. The Republican candidate for governor? The pressure should be on to show how the party’s approach will be different. Or will it be more of the same?