January 21, 2016


Kasich is finally getting his moment (Scot Lehigh, JANUARY 21, 2016, Boston Globe)

Since the turn of the year, Kasich has generated real traction here with his folksy, optimistic, mild-mannered approach. And you can see it now in the interest voters are showing in a candidate whose brand of politics is unlike anything his Republican rivals are offering. [...]

You could also discern the difference at a midday town hall meeting Kasich held in Concord. He was tired of hearing his Republican rivals spent so much of their debating time castigating Obama, he said. It's time to look forward.

Further, the problems this country faces really aren't that difficult to fix, he said; they can all be remedied if leaders are willing to work together in bipartisan fashion.

His own political gift, he said, sounding a bit like presidential-power theorist Richard Neustadt, was an ability "to get people to do things they don't want to do but know they should."

Talking with him on his campaign bus, I asked if he thought his gloom-and-doom rivals had made a mistake in the angry tone they've adopted.

Kasich declined to criticize his rivals, but said he thought people wanted to look forward rather than back.

The problems the country faces "can all be fixed," he said, but "it is going to take creativity and people working together."

After the long succession of major-party nominees pledging to do the same, only to be frustrated once in office, why should voters believe he can do it?

Kasich said he wasn't bragging that he was "the greatest thing since sliced bread," but said he had demonstrated, both in Congress and as governor of Ohio, the ability to reach across the aisle, work in bipartisan fashion, and achieve results.

"We balanced the budget, fixed welfare," he said. "I did it with Democrats, Republicans. It is something I have been able to do all my lifetime."

That may be overly optimistic as far as governing in today's toxic Washington is concerned.

But right now, forward-looking Republican optimism is finding a real audience in New Hampshire.

Here, anyway, John Kasich's moment has arrived.

Posted by at January 21, 2016 11:20 AM