While Ohio’s part-time governor John Kasich has been doing full-time self-promotion out-of-state on a book tour in New York and New Hampshire, once super-friendly state Republican lawmakers have butchered several key proposals in his last biennial budget plan.
Ohio’s General Assembly leaders embarrassed the term-limited, lame-duck Kasich by releasing a budget plan Tuesday that, according to the Toledo Blade, “abandons Mr. Kasich’s tax reform proposal, in which he proposed increases in sales, tobacco, alcohol, and shale oil and natural gas taxes to help pay for a 17 percent cut in the income tax.”
State Sen. Joe Schiavoni, D-Boardman, and a candidate for governor next year, said he’s happy the GOP-controlled House of Representatives has finally come to their senses on income tax cuts that’s haven’t worked as Gov. Kasich said they would.
“I have said for months that tax cuts should not be a priority when our schools are not adequately funded and our state is facing the worst public health crisis in decades,” Schiavoni said according to the Blade.
Schiavoni, who has stepped down from his Senate Minority Caucus Leader role to dedicate full-time to his campaign for governor, believes constituents and their communities have made their concerns known to lawmakers in Columbus.
A Kasich spokesman regurgitated two of John Kasich’s favorite fiscal conservative platitudes about balancing the budget and restraining spending, calling them “essential to fostering a jobs-friendly climate and continuing Ohio’s economic recovery.”
Ohio’s economic recovery has been sluggish under Ohio’s 69th governor who has spent months on end out of the state while costing taxpayers millions to protect him while he’s out promoting himself for a career out of elected politics when his term ends at the end of 2018.
Kasich’s income tax cuts, paid for by hikes in other taxes, especially the sales tax, have done nothing for Ohio except deplete it of revenue that could be directed to better infrastructure, more funding for schools hit hard by the governor’s first budget that robbed them of billions, or to be invested in the opioid crisis that makes Ohio the nation’s leader in deaths-per-day to overdoses.
It seems a pretty big slap in the face of a long-time supply- sider like John Kasich, who has used the state treasury like his own slush fund to promote himself and his book as he travels around the county to appear on national TV shows, where hosts are ignorant to the economic calamity back in Ohio.
In addition to his signature plan, other reports say the House Finance Committee also were not in agreement with 325 other aspects of Gov. Kasich’s executive budget and dumped them, a further sign that they are in charge, not the governor.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer says the governor’s biggest proposals, including a “$39 million tax cut; tax hikes on oil and gas drillers and tobacco, wine and beer and a $1.9 billion sales tax increase,” are gone.
Other dubious proposals by Mr. Kasich like forcing teachers to do internships in the private sector and confiscating the right of municipalities to collect their own taxes are also goners.
If Gov. Kasich thinks he’s got a lock on the hot topic of whether the nation is divided or united, he ought to look homeward angel to see the divisions he’s created in Ohio, where he can’t create the quantity or quality of jobs Ohioans need fast enough and has routinely been rebuffed by Republican legislators over some of his biggest and longest held beliefs about economics and social engineering.