Governor John Kasich (R-OH) announced his presidential run, he is the last major Republican expected to run for the office. Kasich is running as a moderate whose greatest strengths could come with his electability and general election appeal. Kasich is the Governor of Ohio, one of the most important swing states. No Republican has ever won the White House without winning the state of Ohio. Kasich remains very popular in his home state and polling has shown him competitive with Hillary Clinton in the state, sometimes beating her. He coasted to reelection last year and won all but two countries.
However, his appeal statewide does not translate nationally. He is at the back of the pack nationally and tied for eleventh in the Real Clear Politics average. He stands at one-and-a-half percent in the RCP average and is tied with former Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA).
This is Kasich’s second run for the Presidency, just as he is in a second political career. He served in the House of Representatives and helped write and pass the balanced budgets of the Clinton Administration. While in the House, he served as chair of the House Budget Committee for six years. Then, he ran for President in 2000, but dropped out due to fundraising issues. After that, he hosted a show on Fox News and worked at Lehman Brothers until its collapse in 2008. In 2010, he ran for Governor of Ohio and defeated incumbent Gov. Ted Strickland (D).
Kasich is a moderate Republican and not all of his choices as governor will appeal to Republican primary voters. He expanded Medicaid in the state using Obamacare and used some executive-legislative quirks in order to do so. He has defended the move as one of empathy and has said how the Republican Party needs to work on helping the poor. In his speech, he also called on Democrats and Republicans to work together more.
“The Lord wants our hearts to reach out to those who don’t have what we have,” he said. “That shouldn’t be hard for America, that’s who we are. Empathy. Don’t be so quick too judge.”