Few have given Ohio Governor John Kasich a second thought as a presidential candidate. Who can blame us, though? He doesn’t yet stand out as a serious GOP contender, but that could be because those who do stand out are all insane. CNN, however, sat down with him to talk about his ideas and policies. The main thing that sets him apart from the rest of the GOP clown car right now (and will probably ensure he doesn’t even make it to the primaries) is his stance on his faith.
Make no mistake, Kasich considers himself a Christian. You almost have to be in order to be a Republican politician. He’s not, however, a “Christian” the way that, say, Mike Huckabee or Bobby Jindal is. First and foremost, Kasich believes that being influenced by faith means that he focuses on the communities and people facing the most challenges.
By contrast, we have a clown car full of people who’ve done things like cut taxes for the rich, and say that income inequality is the fault of the poor and working class. Jeb Bush wants to do away with workers’ benefits; Rand Paul said that people aren’t working hard enough; and Bobby Jindal caused a massive fiscal crisis in his state with his huge tax cuts for the wealthy.
Kasich feels that his Republican opponents are drawing too much attention to abortion, too. They want to protect the life of a child, but, according to Kasich, they don’t focus on infant mortality rates, they don’t work to increase access to, and quality of, early childhood education. They also don’t care about the environment, which also affects children. In other words, Kasich is saying he’s pro-life, while his opponents are merely pro-birth.
Huckabee, by contrast, would use the military to stop abortions if he has to. Of course, Huckabee also believes that the courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court, have no authority whatsoever. They make suggestions, and that’s it.
Kasich worked to expand Medicaid in Ohio, over the objections of his more idiotic legislature. He took heat for that from South Carolina governor Nikki Haley, and from Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal. They both accused him of “hiding behind Jesus” in his Medicaid expansion. Kasich fired back with this, according to NPR:
I think all people are made in the image of God, and everybody deserves respect.
That’s not hiding behind his religion. That’s presenting his religion for what it’s supposed to be.
He’s also expressed possible support for a path to legal citizenship for undocumented immigrants, although he’d rather get rid of them. That, too, has conservatives up in arms, because they want that path to citizenship off the table entirely.
And on marriage equality, his biggest question, should he receive an invitation from a gay friend to attend their wedding, would be, “What time is it?”
Don’t get us wrong; as a lawmaker, Kasich has his problems. However, if nothing else, Kasich is more Christian than many of the pseudo-Christians currently populating the GOP clown car. What’s sad is that, someone who is a real Christian will never win the GOP nomination because these people want someone hateful, fearful, bigoted, and xenophobic, in office. If we’re to have a Republican president—and, let’s be real, that is a possibility—then someone like Kasich is who we’d need. Not these idiots who keep using their religion as justification for hate, oppression, and coddling the wealthy.
Featured image by Office of Ohio Governor John R. Kasich. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons