The governors of New Jersey and Ohio made great efforts during the campaign last year to show their love for each other. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie stumped for citizen Kasich in 2010 and again for Gov. Kasich last year. Christie is in the top tier of GOP presidential hopefuls for 2016 while Kasich remains an outlier who’s trying to up his profile through a stealth campaign that includes his crusade to convene a constitutional convention for the sole purpose of amending the U.S. Constitution with a balanced budget amendment.
Republicans had a great midterm election year, sweeping all statewide offices in Ohio as they did in 2010. When John Kasich was first elected, he actually planned to be sworn-in in private, breaking history by banning reporters from being witness to the legal event. Only after media complained did Gov. Kasich and his team relent and make the event public again. But no such games will be played this year when Gov. Kasich, for his second and final time, takes the oath of office.
Gov. Christie, the outgoing chairman of the Republican Governors Association, a group that spent millions on Gov. Kasich’s reelection campaign, is making a round of celebratory visits to GOP winners like Kasich. Politico reports Monday that Gov. Christie will be in Ohio on January 12th as one of his many stops that include other states like Iowa, South Carolina and Massachusetts. Building off his work last year, the Garden State governor is making the trips as part of his effort to maintain relationships he developed last cycle, according to Politico. “Christie will start in Florida … at Gov. Rick Scott’s swearing-in for his second term [tomorrow]. Two days later he’ll attend the swearing-in for incoming Gov. Charlie Baker in Massachusetts, followed by the swearing-in for Gov. John Kasich in Ohio on Jan. 12,” Politico’s Maggie Haberman wrote.
Gov. Christie has been seen by millions on at least two occasions hanging out in the private box of Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones this year, undeniable proof that he’s managing his presidential run by schmoozing with the well-connected, especially in a big state like Texas with its 38 electoral votes. Ohio currently has 18 electoral votes, eight fewer than it had for the first quarter of the 20th century.
As Plunderbund reported last year, the two governors are among the bottom 15 states whose job creation performance has failed to live up to its billing. While New Jersey is in the bottom ten, Ohio is marginally better. Neither state has been able to outperform the national job creation average under the Obama Administration. In Ohio, about 109,000 Ohioans are still waiting for Gov. Kasich to deliver the Ohio miracle he promised four years ago. Ohio’s top economic scoreboard keeper reports that Ohio has gone through 25 consecutive months of slow job creation, being unable over this time to outpace the national job creation average.