I stopped watching morning cable news shows a long time ago. All those people yelling at each other about idiotic talking points that early in the morning makes me nervous. They always leave me in a bad mood and that really is no way to start your day. My prohibition against morning cable news shows is the reason I didn’t know John Kasich was going to be on Morning Joe on MSNBC this morning. You can watch the whole 15 minute clip here, and I suggest you do if only to see Mika throw a hay-maker in the first 60 seconds and get shot down by Joe for, I assume, being a real journalist and preventing Kasich from using MSNBC as his own bully pulpit.

It is a classic John Kasich interview. Lots of non sequiturs, lectures about how to “lead”, lectures on how he balanced the budget while in Congress, he hit all the normal Kasich talking points. What did interest me about this interview was the Governor’s odd opinion on closing tax loopholes in relation to finding a deal on raising the debt limit.

“First of all, you can’t default,” Kasich said on the show. “And trillions of dollars of debt, at some point, it is going to sink our children’s future. Now, what I think needs to happen is you make the cuts, you close these loopholes on, hey, these hedge funds getting treated with capital gains, ridiculous. The corporate jet loophole, close it up. Bot don’t raise (tax) rates … that’s a good compromise.”

Wow, reading that makes it sound like Kasich has had a change of heart about closing tax loopholes. Or he is unaware that a tax loophole and a tax expenditure are the same thing. This was his office’s response to a deal that was floated to close specific tax expenditures (read: loopholes) in the Ohio tax code during the budget process that would have generated hundred of millions of dollars for the state.

Kasich, however, is not interested in the proposal and doesn’t believe any of the loopholes, including the one for owners of time shares in jets, should be eliminated at this time.

“What one person describes as closing a tax loophole another person calls raising taxes,” spokesman Rob Nichols said in an email. “While in Congress, Gov. Kasich was well-known for taking on inappropriate corporate welfare and that commitment continues. I think you’d be hard-pressed to find too many Ohioans right now who think their taxes are too low, however.”

To review, a tax expenditure is sometimes referred to as a tax credit or a tax loophole. It is a provision in the state’s tax code that exempts persons or businesses from having to pay a certain portion of a tax. There are literally hundreds in the Ohio revised code representing over $7.5 billion in lost revenue to the state every year. Some of these tax expenditures are good, like the personal income tax credit, and some of them are dumb, like the tax credit for time shares of private jets.

Kasich’s comments are clearly inconsistent with each other. Closing tax expenditures at the federal level is necessary and represents good governance while closing them at the state level equates to raising taxes on citizens. These sentiments can’t both be true.

To test what Kasich truly believes about tax expenditures I suggest someone in the General Assembly introduce a bill that mirrors the proposal put forth in May that will close specific tax loopholes and generate an additional $300 million annually. The plan is backed by think tanks on both ends of the political spectrum and, at the time, seemed to receive interest from members in the House and Senate. The current budget includes a provision requiring a study to be done to examine existing tax loopholes. Why not save the taxpayers money by getting rid of the study, because the leg work has already been done, while also generating much needed revenue for schools and local governments?

Instead of simply talking the talk about good governance why doesn’t Kasich walk the walk?

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  • Random Thoughts

    This whole thing reminds me of a line from “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” when Charlie asks Grandpa Joe why Veruca, the greedy rich kid, acts the way she does. Grandpa Joe has the best explanation when he says, simply, “Because, Charlie… she’s a nitwit.”

    Kasich is Ohio’s Veruca.

  • Anonymous

    Opinions expressed by John Kasich do not in any way reflect the opinions or interests of Ohio or any of its citizens.
    We all know that he will not close any loopholes that impact either his party’s interests or those of Marathon.  He certainly does not share a common bond with taxpayers in this state  The man is as bogus as a $3.00 bill, and I wonder that MSNBC or any other TV station could find a studio with a set long enough that Kasich’s nose didn’t keep rubbing on the lens of the camera, the guy lies so much.

  • Annekarima

    Yeah, he did a great job in Ohio for the colleges.  Is that why when I went to Columbus State the last several quarters, I could not find a parking place for sometimes almost an hour.  This quarter I can find one right away.  Oh, I know that is just one place where his great work shows.

  • John

    Regarding the sales tax breaks for fractional ownership of corporate jets, those provisions exist to promote NetJet’s business. No way elected officials of either Party are gonna mess with that.  Ask Mayor Coleman if he’s in favor of closing that loophole. 

  • Annie_Waits

    I completely agree with you on the morning news show ban.  I always ended up with a headache as I was leaving for work.  That’s why I now watch “Boy Meets World” in the morning – Cory and Topanga and the crew make a lot more sense than most people on cable news.

  • He lies. Rich people win. We lose. Make the pie smaller and leave us to fight over the moldy crumbs. That is the radical RW  TGOPer way. RW median propagates those lies,; they wreck stuff; they blame others; they leave too big a mess to clean up, lather rinse repeat.

    Why did people vote for him again? A new day an bad way was the real slogan.

  • Pardon my typos.

  • Anonymous

    Do you mean “great” as in: “He really greats me” or “great” like that cast iron thing in the bottom of the fireplace that is full of debris, because those are the only two ways I can think of that the word would describe Kasich.

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