Many of us have heard of the chants at demonstrations surrounding businessman Donald Trump’s campaign. Texas Senator Ted Cruz has his share of protesters as well, many of them holding signs that read GOP = HATE.
You won’t find any of those signs being held around the gatherings put together by Ohio Governor John Kasich, the true moderate in the three way race for the Republican presidential nomination. Kasich preaches tolerance for others, has said that he has no intention of deporting illegal immigrants, and in the last month, has started to make significant inroads into the base of supporters of both Cruz and Trump. So what is all the fuss about then?
Kasich cannot win the GOP nomination through the primary contests. He must rely upon the nomination being made at the convention within a divided party. Washington insiders see Kasich favorably as a candidate that they can work with, a man who is willing to work within the existing system to create change in government. It is this support that can transform Kasich’s campaign from primary challenger to being the Republicans’ presidential nominee.
There is no question that Ohio’s economy and state budget have improved under his watch. During Kasich’s tenure as Ohio’s governor, he closed Ohio’s $8 billion budget shortfall without raising taxes, and helped to create a $2 billion dollar rainy day fund for the state. As a member of Congress, Kasich was a member of the House Armed Services Committee for 18 years, helping Ronald Reagan to accomplish his goal of tearing down the Berlin wall and promoting peace through the strength of U.S. armed forces.
Many establishment Republicans are starting to get closer to completely supporting Kasich’s campaign. Of all three Republicans running for the presidency, Kasich has the highest electability versus any Democratic challenger, and is seen as a unifier, not a divider.
After eight years of gridlock in Washington, Congress needs a strong president who can work with both sides of the aisle to get things accomplished. While his success in Ohio cannot be overlooked, where Kasich might have the greatest success, in making things happen in Washington, D.C., could be through him becoming the newest occupant in the Oval Office.
So far in this campaign we have seen sniping and name calling back and forth between Cruz and Trump. It’s gotten so bad that now we have National Enquirer stories about lurid affairs involving Ted Cruz, the publication of less than flattering photographs of Donald Trump’s wife, and more mudslinging than one might find at a tractor pull during a county fair.
That’s where Kasich is making a difference this campaign. From the start, Kasich has concentrated on running a positive campaign, and has not been putting down his opponents left and right. Instead, he’s using his time to talk about issues that matter to all Americans; from immigration to foreign policy, from defense to veterans’ issues, to healthcare and beyond. Washington needs a unifier in the White House. What we don’t need is more name calling and more partisanship.
It isn’t hard to be a partisan in Washington these days. All one needs to do is to just say no to whatever the opposing faction might want; whether they are Democrats or Republicans. Kasich’s determination to stay in the race until the bitter end demonstrates a tenacity that is not found often in politics today. That tenacity proves that he is prepared to do what is necessary to keep government working for the people it serves.
What is much more difficult is bringing friends and enemies together and coming up with common positions that instill confidence in others. Kasich has done this in Ohio, and he can do it as President of the United States, too. Kasich won his home state of Ohio, and has proven that he can be competitive. When Marco Rubio dropped from the campaign, many of his supporters starting coming over to the Kasich camp. That kind of boost is hard to come by, and Kasich has shown that he can build bridges between positions to reach common goals.
Regardless of who you vote for in the Republican primaries, do your research. Read the platforms of each candidate closely, and look at their ideological background before you pull that lever at the polls. Governor John Kasich is one candidate that deserves a better look. At least we haven’t seen anyone being arrested at his campaign events.