John Kasich is very excited at the thought of what he calls an open (or brokered or contested) convention in July, because as he told George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s “This Week,” “I believe that a convention will look at somebody like me, and that’s why I think I’m going to be the nominee.” Kasich added that such a convention will be a good civics lesson for the kiddies.
“We just have to keep going, and we’re going to have an open convention. It’s going to be so much fun. Kids will spend less time focusing on Bieber and Kardashian and more time focusing on how we elect presidents. It will be so cool.”
This is a far cry from what the Kasich campaign was saying on February 28—just a little over a month ago—when his senior strategist scoffed at the idea of a brokered convention.
During a conference call with reporters, the Ohio governor’s senior strategist John Weaver called the idea “cockamamie” and dismissed a New York Times story describing Kasich advisers quietly seeking support for the strategy. Instead, Weaver described a path — one that many establishment Republicans have in turn described as cockamamie — to hang on by a thread through unfriendly Super Tuesday contests and out-wait other faltering rivals to wind up in a head-to-head race with Trump.
Then, he said, Kasich could win the nomination on the convention’s first ballot.
The next day on the Hugh Hewitt Show, Kasich suggested that he hadn’t given much thought to the prospect of a brokered convention. “I don’t know what they call it — some call it brokered — there’s other names for the convention,” Kasich said innocently. “Is that a possibility? Anything’s a possibility in this year. But I don’t really anticipate that happening,” he said, still insistent that he was the guy who would secure the 1,237 delegates needed to win the nomination.
Two days later, during an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity at CPAC, Kasich said for the first time that he thought a brokered convention might be “cool.”
“I do,” think it’ll be a brokered convention, he said, before getting excited about the idea.
“It has to be done fairly,” Kasich said. “As crazy as this year is, can you think of anything cooler than a convention?”
Kasich was excited for the opportunity for kids to learn all about American politics and gain a deeper understanding of the election process instead of watching hours of the Kardashians on reality TV.
“You can’t have a bunch of people in smoke-filled rooms” deciding the outcome, Kasich insisted. It’s time to circumvent the establishment, he said.
Although he served nine terms in the House of Representatives and five years as a moderate Republican governor, Kasich insists on characterizing himself as an anti-establishment outsider.
Now, of course, Kasich is positively giddy at the thought of a contested/brokered convention because he’s pretty sure that he’s the guy who’ll come out on top.
John Kasich’s quixotic bid for the presidency has been called a lot of unflattering things by various pundits — “selfish and delusional,” “utterly strange and bizarre,” and a (not particularly funny) “joke,” to name a few. After witnessing his unseemly and dramatic change of heart on the prospect of a contested convention, I would also add “fundamentally dishonest” to the list.