The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that Governor Kasich plans to travel the country in 2016, not to get a jump on a presidential campaign, but to push for a Balanced Budget Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Ohio is one of 24 states which has called for a constitutional convention. Ten more states are needed to convene the convention and 38 states are needed to ratify an amendment.
The stops Kasich plans to make on his tour have not been announced, but the Plain Dealer suggests if he skips key presidential primary states, it may indicate that Kasich is in no hurry to join the presidential candidate field.
As Governor Kasich is out touting the benefits of a Balanced Budget Amendment, someone in the press should ask him how he would balance the budget, especially given the fact that as governor he unilaterally pushed through the increase of a major welfare program through the voluntary expansion of Medicaid in Ohio. Obamacare Medicaid expansion is projected to cost U.S. taxpayers over $815 billion across all participating states over the next ten years. Any serious balanced budget effort would target this line item as the U.S. House Republicans did in their 2014 balanced budget proposal.
The Plain Dealer notes that Kasich positioned himself as a “problem solver” and “talked up his work” as U.S. House Budget Committee Chairman in the 1990’s at the recent Republican Governors Association meeting in Florida.
The Plain Dealer reported on Kasich’s comments at the event as follows,
“Did I like everything Bill Clinton was doing? What, are you kidding?” said Kasich, who after government shutdowns initiated by his allies worked with the Clinton administration to forge a milestone balanced budget agreement. “Good people need to be committed to solving problems. … You’ve got to be careful with the rhetoric.”
Governor Kasich may want to take some of his own advice when it comes to being careful with rhetoric. Last year, he is reported as having told one Ohio legislator who opposed him on Obamacare Medicaid expansion,
“I respect the fact that you (the legislator) believe in small government. I do too. I also happen to know that you’re a person of faith. Now, when you die and get to the, get to the, uh, to the meeting with St. Peter, he’s probably not gonna ask you much about what you did about keeping government small, but he’s going to ask you what you did for the poor. Better have a good answer.”
And in a 2013 article, “Kasich chides Republican lawmaker over Medicaid expansion,” the Columbus Dispatch described what appeared to be some public strong-arming by Governor Kasich of Representative Marlene Anielski during the Project Love Celebration of Goodness luncheon.
As far as Kasich’s comment about working together to solve problems, the Wall Street Journal did an excellent job in its October 2013 piece,“Medicaid and the Apostle Kasich,” explaining how Governor Kasich, bypassed the state legislature and forced Medicaid expansion through the “obscure” Ohio Controlling Board in a “gambit worthy of President Obama.” So much for working together to solve problems.