Gov. John Kasich’s final months as Ohio’s governor will likely include the veto of multiple conservative pieces of legislation and the rebuke of his Republican colleagues whom he believes only consider their “short-term electoral capability.”
Ohio Republicans recently passed two highly-consequential bills during their lame-duck session, including the pro-life “heartbeat bill” and the long-wanted “Stand Your Ground” bill, which allows gun-owners to use lethal force in life-threatening situations.
But Kasich threatened lawmakers against passing both, and has promised to veto them before he’s pushed out of office by term limits.
“Yeah, it’s about the gun,” Kasich told reporters during a Monday press conference. “It’s about how we feel about the need to protect people and to have lawmakers who have to think about what are the long-term implications, not my short-term electoral capability but really what am I supposed to do to help the folks.”
Kasich has indicated that he will veto both bills before leaving office, and already vetoed a previous version of the heartbeat bill, which prohibits abortions after a heartbeat is detectable in the unborn child. Kasich’s vetoes, however, come amid reports that the Ohio governor is “very seriously” considering a 2020 presidential run as an independent.
“These are earnest conversations that go on virtually every day with some of my friends, my family,” Kasich told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos. “We need different leadership, there isn’t a question about it.”
Kasich went on to express concern “about the tone and the name-calling and the division in our country and the partisanship,” but also has worries “about the policies.”
“I’m worried about our country in the longterm. So, the question for me is, ‘what do I do about this?’” he said, noting that he would consider a third-party run in order to “send a message that can disrupt the political system in this country.”
“All options are on the table for me,” Kasich added. Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown also said that he is “seriously thinking about” running for the Democratic nomination.
– – –