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Considering John Kasich

February 19, 2016

Ask the undecided or “might switch” GOP voters out there why they haven’t picked someone yet, and they generally say they want a president that can fix America.

All of it.

Give John Kasich a look on the re-airing of CNN’s “AC360 GOP Town Hall II” programming tonight. (7:00 PST, 8:00 Mountain, 10:00 Eastern), particularly if you live in one of the fly-over states that will get precious little personal attention from the campaigns.

There is a half-hour lead-in, hosted by Anderson Cooper, before Gov. Kasich comes on. This programming format gives each of the six GOP candidates about 30 minutes to present themselves to the audience, and gets them out of the wrestling ring format of the debates.

For those who eschew CNN on principle, make an exception. Mr. Cooper does a pretty fair job of letting the candidates interact with the audience, and this format is certainly more useful than the idiotic 1 minute sound bite format of the “debates.”

This election has been a showcase of special interest candidates pandering to one specific voting bloc. The woman’s candidate, the black people’s candidate, the brown people’s candidate, the socialist candidate, the outsider candidate, and on and on.

In a one or two person race, that might work, but with so many choices it’s pretty damn obvious that just plain folks aren’t really in most of the candidate’s crosshairs.

Governor Kasich might be the exception.

The Ohio governor has a folksy, aw-shucks style that leads the media to ignore him, particularly since he seems to be adhering pretty closely to his promise not to join the food fight. That means he doesn’t get as much free air time as a Trump, Cruz, Clinton, Sanders, Rubio or Bush.

It also obscures his common-sense, no-favorites approach to government.

The undecided group isn’t looking for the best sound bite candidate.  They want someone who gets the problems facing the nation, like a Trump, has the tools readily available to address them effectively, like a Rubio or a Bush, and a personality capable of melding the disparate elements in Washington into a working unit, and on that last point Kasich stands out.

Kasich does have the advantage that his philosophies, methods and their results are in current use, giving the interested something to actually research in real time.

Maybe Kasich’s message of being the candidate who knows that everyone needs to get something to lift them out of the quicksand for the country to succeed is not a winner for your special interest group.

On the other hand, if your special interest group is America, this could be your guy.

From → op-ed

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