Election 2020

Kasich: Republican Party 'Has Gone Dormant,' Is 'in a Stupor'

Ohio Gov. John Kasich speaks during a town hall April 25, 2016, in Rockville, Md. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Ohio’s GOP governor declared that the Republican Party “has gone dormant” and the other party has gone missing heading into midterm elections.

“I don’t know where the Democrats are. I can’t figure out what they’re for,” John Kasich, who vied for the GOP presidential nomination in 2016, told CNN today. “But what I can say to you is this rise of people, who are now disrupters, is heartening to me. It gives me hope for the future of the Congress.”

Kasich praised the bipartisan discharge petition, opposed by House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), intending to force a floor vote on bills to save beneficiaries of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program from deportation.

“What you’re seeing is a group of people saying we’ve had enough, we don’t care much about the political party, we want to achieve something that we think is justice. And it is a really cool thing. I wondered when it was going to happen. And now it is happening,” he said.

Ryan has said there’s no use in bringing a clean DACA bill without riders sought by the White House to the floor if President Trump is only going to veto it in the end.

“It doesn’t matter whether the president is going to sign it or not. You send it to him. Let him veto it,” Kasich said. “Let him say that he wants these 800,000 people to be shipped out of the country, 800,000 people who — there’s no reason to ship them out of the country.”

The governor said Republicans are now paralyzed “because they’re afraid that, if they do something like this, that somebody on the extreme right is going to be angry and yell at them… Do the right thing and it will pay off. And if you have to pay the price electorally, so be it. At least you have your dignity and at least you can look yourself in the mirror and feel good about yourself.”

Of Roseanne Barr’s racist tweet toward former White House senior advisor Valerie Jarrett, Kasich said, “Are we surprised at the kind of nasty name-calling that is happening across our country?”

“I mean, we are seeing a culture begin to seriously erode for our children and our grandchildren. It is happening. And this is just one other example of the fact that this is completely and totally inappropriate and abhorrent behavior. And we have seen it time and time again,” he said. “…What she did and what she said is totally wrong. The president should have condemned it. But we have to all begin to realize that we’re in the same boat together. And all we do is fight with one another, ultimately the boat will sink.”

Kasich, who has not announced any plans for a future presidential run but continues to fundraise through Kasich for America, said a lack of “love and compassion and humility and forgiveness” will “undo our country.”

“I think we’re in a stupor right now. Then I look at the Democrats, who are not doing so great for this midterm election and you know why they’re not doing great? Because I don’t know what their plan is. In politics, if you don’t have ideas that can be projected to help people improve their lives, you’re a failure,” he continued.

The governor declared that “political parties, philosophies” don’t “mean anything to me.”

“What matters to me today is, are you a truth seeker, are you rational and are you objective?” he asked.