John Kasich

John Kasich Deplores Political Gibberish in Presidential Campaign—Then Relies on It to Sell His Own Record on Obamacare

The Ohio governor has repeatedly made misleading statements about his expansion of Medicaid under the president's health law.


Marcn / Flickr / via Foter

John Kasich is frustrated with the GOP presidential race.

The Ohio governor, who has yet to win a state and is currently running behind in both delegates and national polls, complained about the tone and substance—or lack thereof—in an appearance at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) today.

Kasich declared that Donald Trump, the current frontrunner in the GOP race, "will not be beaten by smearing him." Instead, Kasich argued that the path to victory was to demonstrate a record of leadership and policy success.

"The key is: Who's got a record and a vision, and not just political gibberish," he said, insisting that he had already shown his propensity for both as governor of Ohio. Indeed, Kasich said he was the only candidate left in the race who was running on his record, and he encouraged voters to check it out.

It's true that Kasich, the only governor still running, stresses his record more than any other candidate. But he has also repeatedly misrepresented it, most prominently on his decision to expand Medicaid in the state under Obamacare.

Just days before the New Hampshire primary, Kasich released an ad insisting that he had not expanded Obamacare in Ohio.

This is a claim he has made repeatedly. It is completely untrue.

As governor, Kasich decided to expand Medicaid in Ohio under the law, which provided funds for states to expand the jointly run federal/state health program for the poor and disabled. Indeed, the Medicaid expansion is in some sense the foundation of the president's health law: A majority of the newly covered under Obamacare were covered via Medicaid. In Ohio, about 76 percent of Obamacare's newly covered fall under the program.

The Medicaid expansion was initially all-but-required for states, but thanks to a 2012 Supreme Court decision, states were allowed to decide whether or not to participate in the program, and Kasich went ahead with it. Moreover, this was Kasich's decision alone: He overrode the state's legislature, which objected to the expansion, in order to implement the Medicaid expansion. Since then, he has defended his decision to ignore the legislature on the grounds that the state's elected representative secretly wanted him to override them.

Kasich has defended his decision on budgetary grounds, saying that it didn't weaken the state's budget. What he doesn't say is that the decision to expand Medicaid has cost $6.4 billion—it's just that the spending has gone on the federal tab, rather than the state tab, because, well, that's the way it works under Obamacare, which finances state expansions of Medicaid. 

Kasich's position that presidential candidates should display leadership and vision instead of just spouting political gibberish would be more convincing if he were not rely on misleading political gibberish to defend his own record. 

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  1. This can’t be true. National Review has repeatedly assured me that the Republicans only nominate true conservative believers in small government.

    1. Democrats assure me that, too.

      1. If only we had the Republican Party the Democrats imagine us to have.

        1. Sometimes I think about establishing a (parody) “Evil Party” that actually is as evil as Democrats portray non-Democrats to be.

          One of the planks would be a high minimum wage to keep the poor from getting jobs.

          Another plank would be strong regulation of businesses whose owners didn’t offer campaign contributions and didn’t fall into line on other policies. Businesses that contributed the most to campaigns would get seats on regulatory agency boards.

          1. If you really hate black people and mean them harm, I can’t think of any better way than a program of readily available welfare that rewarded people for bad behavior combined with a high tax heavy regulatory scheme that drove businesses and job opportunities out of black neighborhoods. Oh and then have affirmative action that ensures that those few blacks who do succeed are never seen as having earned their success.

            I am pretty sure the most evil Southern slavery would find such a program beyond the pale. Yet, that is exactly what Progressives did and feel morally superior for doing.

          2. PUPB, that is actually brilliant.

  2. John Kasich had a television show on Fox News called Heartland with John Kasich.

    “John Kasich brings his no nonsense, Midwest sensibility to important stories facing all Americans. It’s straight talk, straight from the heartland.”

    1. I used to like him. It is funny how they always turn out to be big government loving assholes. Never, does it go the other way. Never once is there someone who starts out as a big government loving assholes who later finds religion. They only disappoint never surprise.

      1. There’s also Henry Weismann who helped agitate for the Bakeshop Act of 1895 then became a master baker running his own bakery found that the regulations he wrote made things less flexible for employers and employees. He went on to assist Lochner in his Supreme Court case against the law.

    2. He also used to occasionally sit in the big chair for Baba O’Reilly.

  3. Hes still the straightest speaker of the bunch.

    1. Wow….a high compliment indeed.

    2. Which I realize, isn’t saying much……

  4. At this point it’s either elect Kasich as a one-term caretaker president, or as noted on another thread pull the lever for the guy who is going to cause the whole thing to implode.

    1. Maybe voting booths could have the machine look like Wiley Coyote’s old ACME Dynamite Plunger, with big comedy wires running to a pile of boxes marked “TNT”?

  5. Kasich Johnson is right!

    Seriously, Suderman, you get a gibberish post given on a plate and you don’t like Blazing Saddles? For shame!

    1. PZ, that is what we are for! Good on ya for linking that.

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