Is Ohio Gov. John Kasich thinking about and actively pursuing a presidential run in 2016 despite repeated weasel comments that he’s not? You would be fooling yourself if you answered no. Gov. Kasich, now 62-years old, has reached his highest office to date in his long and lucrative career as an elected public official. From state senator to congressman to governor, the messiah of reform knows his last chance to grab the national spotlight in his totally transparent campaign to both downplay and accelerate his name as a real presidential contender in two years won’t last long.

Having already jetted out to Las Vegas to kiss the ring of Sin City’s biggest casino mogul, Sheldon Adelson, whose fabulous wealth is seeking a Republican who can get their ticket punched to live in the White House, it’s no surprise that Johnny Pennsylvania would show up at exactly the kind of big buck event he dreams to be at while playing the role at home of just another commonsense conservative whose ideas have proved to not work even though he’s had virtually no challenges from a Republican legislature who’s given him almost everything he wants.

But reports from the event, published by Bloomberg News, said the Lord’s choice for reelection this year in Ohio was anything more than ho-hum. According national political whiz Mark Halperin, Kasich followed Kentucky Senator Rand Paul but preceded New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who was in Ohio recently to continue his love fest with Kasich. John Kasich was the only member of the troupe that trooped to 834 Fifth Avenue, the glittering home of New York Jets owner Wood Johnson, that was up for reelection. Halperin remarked that one big black limousine after another depositing well-heeled Republican donors in front of the Upper East Side apartment, which happens to be on the market for $75 million in cash.

If political watchers have learned anything over the years, it’s that John Kasich is in love with John Kasich, and that even when he’s supposed to talk about someone else—like he did in 2012 when he stumped for Mitt Romney in Ohio—he can’t talk about anyone else but John Kasich. And so it was in NYC, where the haul for the evening according to Halperin was over $2 million, Kasich “highlighted his record in Ohio, including his programs for treating the mentally ill.”

Aside from the reality that Kasich inherited a recovering economy that outpaced the national average but has since underperformed the national average going on 22 straight months since he and his pet secret agency JobsOhio showed up, his favorite but false narrative that he wants to uplift people by reducing income tax rates and making government the handmaiden of the private sector was on full display again before a crowd that included GOP stalwarts like Rupert Murdock and others who can dump millions at a pen stroke into political campaigns.

According to Halperin, “Once again, the feeling in the room was pretty low energy as Kasich concluded.” Low energy? Who knew that Kasich’s ah-shucks ma style, a delivery that plays well with low-information voters who swallow his narrative that he wants to help “people living in the shadows” would bomb with the fat-wallet crowd. But it did, at least in NYC. In Ohio, where he won by a skinny margin in 2010 and could win by double digits this time, the hokum of his story, dipped for good measure in cryptic Bible babble, plays well enough that he could be on his way to more opportunities to sell himself as the GOP’s next viable candidate for presidential or vice president.

Will Kasich’s oversized ego accept anything less than president, or will he hide his hard-right talons, as he’s done successfully this election cycle, enough that he comes across not as the stubborn non-thinker who’s as mean today as he was during his early years in office but as a so-called moderate because he expanded Medicaid over objections of his Tea Party wing? Time will tell, but time has already told us that John Kasich is still as lost and wrong today as he was years ago, when his first attempt at the White House in 2000 crashed before it every took off.

  • dmoore2222

    The Dispatch has spun the narrative that this election is over before it even started. I say it ain’t. Not a single vote has been cast, and no matter how much this moron repeats the lies about his accomplishments, no one other than his base is buying it. And his base is not enough to get him re-elected. People made their minds up 3 years ago how they’re going to vote and he hasn’t done squat to change that. If dems turn out in numbers, Frackin John loses.

  • wetsu

    I’m with you. While the FitzGerald campaign has been largely nonexistent it defies logic for JK to be up 30 points. It smacks of media tampering or, sadly, that there are that many morons in Ohio. He went underground after the SB5 beatdown and I believe that they are sweating the fact that if an equal portion of people who voted it down have a memory that they are on thin ice.

  • Retrofuturistic

    I so hope you are correct about this. I’m worried about a hacked election, gerrymandering, and voter suppression.

  • goofproof

    I think too many sheeple in Ohio buy into the Republican brand even when the overall result is against the interests of most voters. The facts are lost to fear, paranoia, and greed.

  • anastasjoy

    Actually quite a few “single” votes have been cast, including mine for Ed FitzGerald. There were about 60 black pastors at the Cuyahoga Board of Election yesterday with Armond Budish and they were also voting. So did Ed and Nina and her family. That’s a bunch of votes not cast for Kasich!

  • anastasjoy

    Gerrymandering doesn’t impact the governor’s race. All it does is pretty much assure that the composition of the legislature and Congress will remain the same. Hacking is way overblown and we should cut that out. There is not evidence of real hacking, as movie-spy-exciting as it sounds. Voter suppression is definitely as problem as the king of voter suppression Jon Husted is our secretary of state.

  • anastasjoy

    FitzGerald’s campaign has NOT been “nonexistent” unless you go entirely by TV ads which he cannot afford because he doesn’t grovel to big-money interests like Kasich. He has campaigned week in and week out for over a year and a half all over the state, visiting every county. I haven’t been able to avoid the guy!

  • wetsu

    He has not had a presence in my particular neck of the woods, although that would be understandable since I live near the republican bastion of Findlay. Perhaps he has visited, but, those folks are committed and he could make more hay with multiple visits elsewhere.

    Believe me, I want him to win.

  • Retrofuturistic

    So do you think that people voting against Kasich will vote for Fitrakis or Fitzgerald?

  • dmoore2222

    Let’s hope they vote for Fitzgerald since a vote for a third party candidate would likely help Kasich.

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