DeWine Caught In the Middle of Kasich and Trump’s Nasty War
It might be August, but there’s an icy pall descending on Ohio via Air Force One. Donald Trump is campaigning for Ohio’s GOP candidates, but a looming figure over Ohio politics won’t be joining him: Governor John Kasich.
Months of nasty tweets, Sunday shows, and op-eds have created a pretty awkward situation for the Ohio GOP.
And caught in the middle of the fracas? Mike DeWine.
DeWine has marched lockstep with Trump after attacking Kasich’s chief accomplishment– Medicaid expansion. DeWine spent millions on attack ads and mailers to win the Republican primary, and reiterated his opposition time and again. During the primary, DeWine said Medicaid expansion “isn’t financial sustainable for Ohio” and proclaimed that expansion “will not exist as we know it today.”
But once he realized he wouldn’t get John Kasich’s endorsement without supporting his signature achievement, what did DeWine do?
He tried to pull the wool over voters’ eyes about his record of attacking Medicaid expansion and fighting against the Kasich administration’s efforts to expand health care access. But, Ohio voters already know not to believe anything that 40-year-long career politician Mike DeWine says. And his record on Medicaid expansion is long and clear.
Read more about DeWine’s awkward dance below or HERE:
Trump to enter divided Republican Party in battleground Ohio
As the feud burns deep, Ohio’s Republican candidate to succeed Kasich, Mike DeWine, is caught in the middle.
DeWine, a former senator and the current state attorney general, has tried to use his role as one of Ohio’s longest-serving and best-known politicians to rise above the infighting and embrace endorsements by both Kasich and Trump.
DeWine brought the entire Republican ticket onto the stage at his annual ice cream social in June and made light of the blistering Republican primary against Kasich’s lieutenant governor, Mary Taylor.
Kasich was reluctant to endorse DeWine. He said for the first time that he’d support DeWine earlier this month only after securing assurances that the Republican candidate would preserve Kasich’s expansion of health care coverage for low-income residents as part of the Obama-era health care overhaul.
Trump, like most of his party in Washington, has fought to dismantle the health care law.
The president also has repeatedly jabbed Kasich, describing him this month on social media as “very unpopular” and a “failed presidential candidate.”
Polling suggests, however, that Kasich may be more popular than Trump in Ohio.