Ohio Gov. John Kasich is scheduled to be in Phoenix Wednesday to pitch the Arizona legislature on passing a resolution backing a proposal for a federal balanced budget amendment.
Hoping to raise his standing among possible 2016 GOP presidential contenders from bottom dweller to something higher, Gov. Kasich continues his stealth campaign for President of the United states with a national public relations roadshow to gain needed exposure for the 62-year old hard-right politician whose success in the Buckeye State depends on a friendly Republican-dominated legislature giving him most of what he wants.
When Ohio’s glib term-limited governor started his long and lucrative career in public office back in 1978 when he won a state senate seat, where his first resolution in the General Assembly called for a federal balanced budget amendment, a favorite it not quixotic ideological windmill Republicans yearn for even though experts say it would be a disaster if actually achieved and implemented. But in America today, long-held off-the-cliff ideas GOP ideologues like Kasich have championed in spite of just how bad off the nation would be if their ideas actually became law pass for commonsense among the Tea Party crowd that hates government, especially the federal government. Kasich has long claimed, for example, that government doesn’t create jobs, but should be the dutiful handmaiden to corporations. In the gospel according to John Kasich, government has original sin where corporations are something the Lord likes, like the Lord likes him.
Just last week, Ohio’s senior U.S. Senator, Sherrod Brown, panned Kasich’s idea as absurd. Elected leaders like Ohio’s governor have no problem spending trillions of dollars on tax cuts that mostly benefit the already rich and on out-sized military spending that has perpetuated more than a decade of unnecessary war in middle and far east countries like Iraq and Afghanistan. Like the Music Man salesman who hoodwinked an entire small Iowa town of rubes by flim-flaming them into buying instruments to keep the young crowd out of the local pool parlor, it’s basic Kasich to sell political snake oil as good public policy.
Gov. Kasich loves secrecy, which he demonstrated in 2011 when he proposed Ohio create a private and secret job creation group that sped through a friendly GOP-controlled legislature and largely fallen flat on its core mission. For two years, John Kasich’s job creation machine has failed to meet the national job creation average. It appears Kasich backers have formed a new 501(c)(4) nonprofit to raise money without contribution limits and without disclosing its donors in order to pay for Kasich’s stealth presidential campaign travel arrangements.
Based in Columbus, “Balanced Budget Forever” will shroud its work as it’s entitled to do, yet while little is known about it, faithful followers of Gov. Kasich suspect strong ties to the governor’s long-time, wealthy Silicon Valley friend and campaign contributor, Mark Kvamme, who moved to Ohio when Kasich tapped him to construct and lead JobsOhio until he resigned to form his own venture capital firm. Kvamme is a favorite Kasich money man who was part of Congressman Kasich’s short-lived campaign for president in 2000, and who will play a similar role again.
John Kasich traveled to Davos, Switzerland, to hobnob with the pantheon of rich and famous who routinely attend such events. Who paid for the governor’s trip has never been disclosed, and statehouse reporters are sleepy enough to apparently not care enough to ask. So the sudden appearance of BBF should be no surprise, since it’s follows basic Kasich methodology to creating special purpose secret groups to both push a favorite Kasicklore topic and to keep his campaign operations in the dark.
Gov. Kasich’s narrative of balancing a state budget out of whack by billions and showing a smidgen of compassion for the down and out by accepting $2.5 billion to expand Medicaid has become gospel despite being riddled with false facts and erroneous conclusions. Republicans like John Kasich harp on the perils of government debt, but Kasich has never been asked to say what he would have done had he been Gov. Ted Strickland facing an economic meltdown second only to the Great Depression.
Kasich still has more than 100,000 jobs to create to get Ohio back to where it was before the Great Recession even though President Obama and his policies, which Gov. Kasich has repeatedly panned even though he can’t say what he would have done differently, have actually created more private sector jobs now than there were before the Great Recession.
Gov. Kasich is black-belt performance politician whose time as a Fox News political TV talk show host taught him that staging is critical to the message, especially when his message, like a balanced budget amendment, makes little sense.