As the Republican Party seeks a potential Presidential nominee for 2016, one that is starting to come to mind is Ohio Governor John Kasich, elected in 2010.
Kasich is a very engaging person, who served 18 years in Congress, including heading the House Budget Committee in the mid 1990s, and working for gun regulations against the wishes of the National Rifle Association. Kasich has always shown an independent streak, and also was a substitute on Fox News Channel talk shows for Sean Hannity and Bill O’Reilly, and briefly, had his own show, often making more sense than the typical right wing hosts on that cable channel.
Kasich has made mistakes as Governor, including the attempt to curb collective bargaining rights for labor, soundly defeated in a referendum; and rejecting funding for a high speed rail project; and his 2010 gubernatorial victory over Governor Ted Strickland was won by only 77,000 votes statewide. Like any politician, one can find weaknesses in his record and background, but he could give any Democratic Presidential nominee a good challenge, although the Democrat would still be heavily favored, ultimately, in the Electoral College.
Kasich had a business career in the first decade of the 21st century after leaving Congress, so he has had Congressional experience, business experience, and state government experience, and has decided, unlike most Republican governors, to allow expansion of Medicaid. He has also refused to align himself with the Tea Party Movement, which is in his favor.
Considering that Ohio is a true “swing ” state that could go either way in future Presidential elections, Kasich would have a good chance to perform better than many other potential GOP candidates, and considering that Ohio had six Republican Presidents from the 1870s to the 1920s, the “Buckeye” state cannot be ignored, so should Kasich win another term as Governor, he would have to be considered seriously for President, which he briefly sought in 1999 before dropping out.
Since personality and communication abilities really matter, Kasich should be in the front of the pack. Even if one does not agree with Kasich, it is hard not to like him personally, something one cannot say about many of the potential GOP Presidential candidates!