I doubt that two of Gov. Kasich’s old Republican friends will be turning up at the governor’s campaign  appearances this year:  Mitt Romney and Chris Christie.

The Columbus Dispatch, long friendly to the governor, has published before -and-after photos of  Kasich with Mitt in 2012 at Otterbein University.  A big Romney campaign sign in a photo that turned up on Kasich’s campaign website, revealed Republican Mitt Romney’s motto: Real Change Day One…

The sign has been scrubbed from a photo on the Ohio governor’s  website. It speaks volumes of the new twist in the Kasich reelection bid.  Indeed, in the closing days of the 2012  campaign Kasich predicted a big victory for his friend Mitt in Ohio (didn’t happen). “Look,” Kasich said on Meet the Press, “they’re very close.  But I beliieve right now we are currently ahead, internals  show us currently ahead.  I honestly think that Romney is going to carry Ohio. And you know, I have not been saying this.  I now believe it’s going to happen.”

A footnote to the hug-in:  Both Kasich and Romney joined in endorsing  the new law restricting collective bargaining, which was  trounced by Ohio’s voters by the time it went to the polls.

In a later change of heart, ‘Kasich was quoted on TV as describing Mitt as “terrible”. We’re sure the word got back to his friend Mitt.

About Christie:  Of current vintage, Kasich and Christie exchanged deep vows at the  governors’ conference in Scottsdale, Arizona. The Dispatch’s Joe Vardon on the scene described them – ready? – officially bros. A couple of white-guy soul brothers?

Kasich had already said that “Chris and I are friends.  He texts me, we laugh, we bust each other’s chops”. Christie says, in turn,  that he loves John Kasich, without mentioning chops.  Kasich  was a little  more  metaphorical, saying of the New Jersey gov, “He’s like a big teddy bear, he’s just, I like Him.”

That was then, in the searing heat  of Arizona renowned sunshine with the presumed  rosiest of prospects for Christie to run the table for the GOP presidential nomination.

But then that damned bridge scandal not only jammed up the motorists but Christie’s own political prospects. Have you noticed how so many pundits are now talking about Jeb Bush these days?  At least, for now. Politics hates a vacuum.


Here are the altered Kasich photos: