John Kasich is using the budget as an excuse to push through every radical, ideologically extreme idea he’s ever had.  Today, the Governor spoke at the Greater Cleveland Partnership and said, according to the Crain’s Cleveland Business Journal:

Because funds are tight, he said he might find money for incentives to new businesses by privatizing state assets; he used the Ohio Turnpike as, he emphasized, a hypothetical example. He said he could lease the Ohio Turnpike for $3 billion and use most of that money, after repaying $600 million in outstanding turnpike debt, to attract business to Ohio.

“I’m not telling you this is going to happen,” he said, but it was just one of the ways his administration might raise a kitty of money for business expansion in a time of budget belt-tightening.

Mr. Kasich also suggested that he might favor what he called a “capital gains differential” to keep wealthy shareholders from moving out of state. He said he hopes, over time, to eliminate the state personal income tax. In the meantime, it might be possible to tax capital gains on stock sales, now taxed at the 6% rate that regular income is taxed, at a lower rate, he said.

John Kasich wouldn’t keep bringing up the idea unless he was totally committed to do it.  This is the second time Kasich has voluntarily broached the subject without any prompting.

Incidentally, the idea of leasing the Turnpike and using the proceeds specifically to “raise a kitty” for corporate welfare isn’t a new idea.  Who proposed it first?

This is precisely what Ken Blackwell proposed in 2006.  No difference but the promised price tag.  Blackwell predicted $6 billion; Kasich is predicting half that much.

As Joseph pointed out back in December, there was a study in 2006 that concluded that the Turnpike really only had about $1 billion value to a potential lessee.

And remember, this was one of the key platforms of Ken Blackwell’s campaign.  And what did it get him? 36% of the vote.

There are constitutional questions whether proceeds from leasing the Turnpike can be used for General Revenue Funds (GRF) expenditures and not restricted to only the separate transportation budget. 

Regardless, Kasich isn’t planning to privatize the Turnpike to fund your kids’ school, or even keep Colton Henson’s tuition at the OSU in check.  He’s not going to use that to help pay for Medicaid or keep police on the streets.  Nope, he just said he wants to use it to create a $3 billion kitty for RobsOhio to distribute in private!  (So much for the promise that RobOhio would be self-funding anytime soon, huh?)

Meanwhile, as the middle class, working class, and the just plain ol’ poor are preparing to take it on the chin with Kasich’s budget, Kasich’s promising even more tax cuts for the rich, even during this upcoming budget fight.

Kasich cares more about protecting corporate welfare and giving himself and his rich corporate buddies more tax cuts than he does the people who are actually suffering from this economy. Oh, yeah, I forgot, after this orgy of financial gluttony, eventually they get so fat and stuffed that a few crumbs will bound to fall off their gilded tables for poor mice of Ohio to survive off of.

And by the way, can we revisit what the latest Quinnipiac Poll said about the turnpike privatization issue?

imageNOTE:  That’s what was said when Ohioans were told it would be done to balance the budget, NOT to create a “kitty” for RobsOhio.  And even though the same poll showed Ohioans are deeply concerned about the State’s budget, privatizing the Turnpike was still the most unpopular proposal with Ohioans that Quinnipiac tested!

And don’t even lecture me about “class warfare” until you’re prepared to acknowledge that Kasich is waging it.

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  • RK

    Kasich is Wall Street vs. Small Street. Now he wants to add Turnpikes for the rich and Turnips for the poor.

  • Anonymous

    I’m not so sure he’s offering the turnips, either.

  • Anonymous

    I’m not so sure he’s offering the turnips, either.

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  • Good thing turnips are kinda yummy.

  • Good thing turnips are kinda yummy.

  • Guest

    Stealing the Ohio Turnpike and selling it to the lowest bidder….why are the radical Republicans in charge again…to make rich people happy and sell the rest of us out.

    Evil in Ohio thanks to radical racist KKKasich, thanks to my fellow Ohioans, Idiots and suckers

  • Anonymous

    There is no question this is unconstitutional – proceeds from tolls and fees related to driving in Ohio MUST be spent on construction, maintenance or security of highways and bridges, period. I’m sure the Ohio Contractors Association is putting the finishing touches on the lawsuit that they will file the day he signs the bill. Then once he loses in court, the legislature gets to come back and pass a budget “fix” that raises taxes or makes more onerous cuts to bring things back into balance. It’s VLTs all over again.

  • Fotogirlcb2002

    Did you see him on the news the day he went to Cincinnati? want the director of Odot to go there and look at their streetcar program — because thats such a great thing — you know transportation around the city ( like thr RR didnt provided that around the state) all thats about is to try and get that streetcar $$ to add to his turnpike money
    I am sure they will be told “the streetcars will never pay for them selves )
    and he doesnt care about the Quinnipiac polls — hes going to do what he wants — no one in this state seems willing to challenge him

  • Anonymous

    This is going to be a disaster if he goes through with it. Already, the increased tolls have cut traffic on the turnpike; they pulled that trick of raising the speed limit last year to try to lure drivers back. Any profit-hungry private owner will jack up tolls to the point where the road will be even more abandoned, diverting still more traffic onto Rtes 2 and 20, which will then require even more taxpayer-funded maintenance. This is lose-lose for the taxpayers. It would also have a negative impact on the economy of northern Ohio since travel and transportation will increase costs of doing business. Unless they turn the state’s other interstates into toll roads and sell them off too (and I wouldn’t put it past Kasich), it’s an unfair economic advantage for the rest of the state.

  • Guest

    Yet another reason to not take the Ohio Turnpike. Now they want to sell it to the lowest bidder then have us pay really high fees for a road that is more than paid for. Why is it a toll road again? More theft courtesy of the evil radical Republican party.

  • Fotogirlcb2002

    I dont think you are to far off on your understanding, Annakarima. I figure the same — all major highways could possibly become toll roads also. The way this is looking you may have to pay to get into Ohio and out of Ohio on all sides. The whole place could be a foriegn entity before its over in 4 years.Perhaps one of his well to do pals from Lehman Bros could buy it –((isnt there also something called out of state entity))
    So far all we hear about jobs is his jobsohio nightmare — and look who is at the helm of that. Wonder if jobsohio can be sold once its established.
    you know I looked up an article on Indianas toll roads and there was a photo of Gov Daniels there — if you put hair on him he would look close enough to be Kasichs brother.
    yes we need ways to help our states economy — but selling off our state peice by piece may not be the answer– and the really bad thing is we wont have any say who gets any of it. I dont pretend to understand all of this either– if it is sold who actually gets the money — it is after all a road–transportion $$ ?
    you know someone talked ( Kasichs people?) that getting of rid of the rest areas and putting in fast food places could generate money from taxes.Next thing you know it will pay to pee along the raods.

  • Annekarima

    Another question: How can the gov just decide to sell the Turnpike? If the Turnpike belongs to the people of Ohio who paid the taxes and the tolls for the thing, why wouldn’t the question of selling it have to go to a vote before the people of Ohio? Wouldn’t that be proper? Not just the gov making the decision on his own that he is going to sell it? What are the written rules here?

  • Littleguy

    Kasich was in Toledo yesterday. In same breath spoke of eliminating the prevailing wage law and eliminating the capital gains tax. Said UT could build two dorms for price of one if prevailing wage was eliminated. Translated that means he would probably cut construction wages by at least 75% to get to his one half number…since there would be no change in the cost of materials for the project. (or is the Governor just Klueless when it comes to math?)

    The bottom line is that he proposed that the guy who lays bricks in th e90 degree sun should work for 25 cents on the dollar… and pay taxes on ever dime of that. Now the guy who’s papa left him a couple of million, and who sits in an air conditioned office profiting from the trading of the bonds that finances that project….. in the same breath the governor said he shouldn’t pay any taxes on his profits from that! Is this guy truly just a Klueless bus driver, or instead a Robin Hood for the rich? Move over John Rockefeller….I think I know.

  • Anonymous

    Everything Kasich does is a reverse version of Robin Hood.

  • Fotogirlcb2002

    I love it –he was getting backed big time by big construction companies –wonder how they will view this — oops did he have a old peoples moment and forget his promise

  • Fotogirlcb2002

    yes he takes from the poor gives to the rich
    I said a few days ago:
    he was a Hood –taking from the poor gave to the rich
    then privitized the shops along main street ( near the rusted RR tracks )
    and when the people demanded good wages and health care
    he and Boehner wept
    these people truly get on my last nerve–
    and now Shannon Jones has joined them with her SB 5 —
    oh! wheres the real Robin Hood when you need him

  • Chipvic

    I work on the turnpike and none of your taxes pay for it,it is self sustaining paid for completely from tolls.and their profits are huge this year,so they could contribute a portion to the state without selling it and without hundreds who work there losing their jobs,by the way the new Governor made us take a 3 year wage freeze in dec. even tho turnpike revenue and profit was great the past year! u drive on it you pay.Dont get why so many people think their taxes pay for it!

  • Fotogirlcb2002

    why dont people know this — thx Chipvic for your info–
    I wish this was up on a bill board someplace for all to see

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  • Conservative Patriot

    why must you liberals ALWAYS PLAY THE RACE CARD?

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