Ohio’s term-limited governor, John Kasich, who wants to be president, did not take questions Tuesday night when he signed over 4,000 pages containing some terrible public policy into law.
For the statehouse press corps, timid as it is, showing up for another razzle dazzle bill signing performance then being stiffed by a chief executive who routinely refuses to answer questions is par for the course with Ohio’s 69th governor.
Kasich Takes No Questions
“Here in this state, we’re minding the store,” he said, the AP reported. “We’ve got our eyes firmly fixed on the horizon. We know that we can be better and stronger.”
As he’s done consistently over his time as top state leader, Gov. Kasich again ducked explaining or defending his $71 billion bad budget bill, which he’ll now wear like an anchor around his neck as he desperately tries to lift his terribly low national polling numbers enough that he won’t be embarrassed by not being among the top ten Republicans to be in the first GOP debate to be held in his home state in Cleveland in about a month.
Kasich Flounders In Iowa And Nation
After he signed the bill, sealing his fate as an uncompassionate social conservative even though he’s long winded on helping people living in the shadows, new polling out Wednesday on who Iowans like for president shows Ohio’s cranky, dismissive governor sleeps with the fishes as he continues to poll at two percent. Competition is something Gov. Kasich really doesn’t like, and based on findings by Quinnipiac, it looks like Mr. Kasich will not be competition for the likes of Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin leads with Iowa Republican Caucus goers. Walker maybe the leader in this survey, but he has six other contenders battling for second place.
Gov. Kasich appears to be 14th [at 2%] among Iowans, who only give a lower rating [1%] to one other, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who yesterday announced he’s running for president. Quinnipiac shows second place being won by billionaire real estate mogul Donald Trump, with Ben Carson, who has never held public office, at 10 percent each. U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas pull down 9 percent each, while former Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida is at 8 percent and U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida is at 7 percent. Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee has 5 percent. No other candidate is above 4 percent and 5 percent are undecided, Quinnipiac says.
Performing as poorly nationally as he is in Iowa, a CNN/ORC International Poll shows the glib governor who doesn’t take questions from reporters stuck at a high of two percent. Meanwhile, the widely expected Democratic nominee, Hillary Rodham Clinton, dominates all Republicans.
In his signing statement, Gov. Kasich said this budget represents “hope and opportunity” for Ohioans. Hope and opportunity for Mr. Kasich always seems to bend toward the rich and well connected. One big disappointment visited on Ohio schools by Gov. Kasich was his reduction in education spending by a cool $78 million. Ohio Senate President Keith Faber, a strong wing-man for Kasich who has kept troublesome bills like right to work from ever reaching the governor’s desk, got the tables turned on him by his buddy after widely promoting the fact that the Senate version of the budget wouldn’t cut money from any schools. That promise was big and hollow.
For those not rich and well connected, like Peggy Cooley who along with others asked the uncompassionate governor to not close developmental disability centers where their loved ones reside and get exceptional care the Kasich Administration wants to dump into the private home healthcare market, their please fell on deaf ears. Responding to Kasich’s plan to shutter two development disability centers, one in Youngstown and one near Dayton, Ms. Cooley offered her assessment.
Developmental Disability Centers
“I can not imagine the disappointment that Robin Tarr and so many others must be feeling right now. They worked endlessly to make sure that their voices were heard and their stories were told. Even the general assembly finally heard them. Kasich has his own agenda and can not be bothered with what other people have to say on any issue that doesn’t conform to his end game; his obsession to become the next POTUS,” she said via email to me.
Known for his anti-women positions, Gov. Kasich showed his true colors again by failing to stand up for women when he signed new abortion restrictions into law. Kasich’s bad budget bill includes regulations unrelated to the state’s finances, according to a statement by NARAL Pro-Choice. The new rules for abortion providers handed to the Ohio Department of Health, the group said, were added without any public input from the department. Abortion providers, dwindling in number under Gov. Kasich, had no opportunity to provide testimony to any Finance committee or subcommittee.
Kasich Attacks Women’s Health Choice Again
NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio Executive Director Kellie Copeland didn’t mince words. “John Kasich just approved regulatory schemes that were written by anti-choice special interest groups and inserted into the budget through sneaky maneuvers at the 11th hour. These regulatory schemes have one purpose: to remove women’s access to safe and legal abortion. This will hurt women. When women seek abortion, having the procedure be legal and accessible keeps it safe. Governor Kasich’s policies will continue to push women to seek illegal, unsafe alternatives. Today’s signing of this budget bill will make things even worse.”
Following through on decades of Reaganism that has hollowed our America’s middle class, Kasich’s budget contains nearly $2 billion in tax cuts, reducing income-tax rates by 6.3 percent and providing more tax relief for small-business owners. Mr. Kasich still adheres to the false notion that tax cuts produce jobs.
Budget Will Rain On Kasich’s Parade
The AP reported that Gov. Kasich offered another gem that shows his special brand of humor. “Kasich joked that he had a big announcement to make, then added: ‘It stopped raining.'”
The rain may have let up yesterday, but it’s going to pour on the governor from here on out, in Ohio and other states, so the final joke may be on him as his terrible “big ideas” on budgets and public policy cement him to a failed ideology he’s vested himself in over his nearly 40 years in politics.