- - Thursday, April 16, 2015

The field of Republicans vying to be the next president of the United States is growing faster than Iggy Azalea’s ever-expanding posterior. That’s a good thing when the new additions to the field can appeal to voters with a track record that reflects a commitment to limited government ideas and responsible economic policies. It’s less awesome when unpopular, unprincipled, big government politicians dive into the race.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who regularly travels to New Hampshire and South Carolina and recently told reporters that he’s “seriously considering” running for president, certainly fit into the latter category.

Mr. Kasich barely registers in early primary or caucus state polls. The University of Virginia’s resident political savant Larry Sabato has Mr. Kasich firmly entrenched in his third tier of perspective candidates. And even where he’d theoretically be the strongest – in Ohio – a recent Quinnipiac University poll showed Mr. Kasich to be weaker than single-ply toilet paper, garnering the support of a measly 25 percent of Ohioans.

It’s not surprising that his numbers in Ohio are less than stratospheric. Voters there have seen his shameful liberal record first-hand. They know not to believe the moderate spin he’s inventing for the national stage.

In the last several months, Mr. Kasich opposed his party – and thrilled President Obama – by supporting an expansion of the state’s Medicaid program. He recently vetoed a priority issue for Ohio Republicans that would have required out-of-state drivers who register to vote in the state to obtain drivers licenses and register their vehicles within 30 days. And he’s a vocal supporter of the wildly unpopular Common Core education curriculum.

Mr. Kasich essentially announced a war on conservative economic principles when he unveiled a budget proposal that would raise taxes in the state by more than $5 billion. His budget further complicates an already confounding state tax code for small businesses and individuals. It also inexplicitly calls for additional taxes and fees on the energy industry, one of the only sectors in Ohio and nationally actually creating jobs during this lackluster national recovery.

Not surprisingly, the Kasich tax increase plan has been met with all the support of a drunken strumpet in church.

Both sides of the aisle have lambasted the proposal – with everyone from businesses and state and local chambers of commerce, to progressive activists and national tax policy experts dismissing the plan as gimmicky and defined more by “tax shifts” than “tax cuts.”

With all those groups in Ohio panning his policies and Buckeye State Republicans fleeing his side in droves, it’s hard to tell what his advisers were thinking by sending him through the early primary state gauntlet.

In a field of principled, electable GOP candidates, Mr. Kasich, with his ever=changing stance on core conservative issues, shouldn’t be taken seriously by voters. At best, he’s taken it upon himself to fill the squishy center of the Republican Party that never wins national elections. At worst, Mr. Kasich wants to subject all Americans to the terrible policies that he’s using to drag his state backward.

Just because Kasich can run for president doesn’t mean he should. Rather than gallivanting around America trying to drum up support for his absurd presidential bid, Mr. Kasich needs to worry about cleaning up the mess he’s made in Ohio with his big government schemes.

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