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Kasich remains mum on right-to-work initiatives

Published: Mon, December 31, 2012 @ 12:02 a.m.

By Marc Kovac



The 2012 Ohio legislative session ended with plenty of hot-button issues that will carry over into 2013.

From union-opposed right-to-work initiatives to whether teachers should be allowed to carry guns in schools, Gov. John Kasich didn’t offer many specifics in response to questions about his stances.

Right To Work

Kasich still isn’t biting on questions related to efforts to ban mandatory union membership and dues payments, via right-to-work petitions being circulated in the state for the next general election.

“I’ll just say it one more time,” he said. “We have a very aggressive agenda that’s moving Ohio in the right direction — higher ed reform, K-12 reform, our school funding, our whole job-training initiatives, the ability to take care of infrastructure. That is my focus, period.”

Pressed on whether he would support an effort by proponents to place the issue on the November 2013 ballot, Kasich would only respond, “When you have a focus, you have to focus on your agenda. That’s what I’m focused on. Think of me as a horse trying to run to the finish line with blinders on. I’m not looking at any horse next to me. If I just do this, Ohio is going to be in much better shape, and focus is an awful lot about what this job is about.”

Ballot Issues

The governor and legislative leaders were asked whether super majorities in the Ohio Senate and House would pave the way for legislative ballot initiatives, placing contentious issues before voters without being blocked by Democrats.

Longtime Ohio Public Radio Statehouse reporter Bill Cohen put the question this way: “The Democrats say that now that Republicans have a three-fifths majority in both chambers, you could, if you wanted, put ballot issues on the ballot, and the Democrats couldn’t stop you. ... Is there anything you would like legislators to put on the ballot next year with that three-fifths super majority?”

Kasich paused for a moment before saying, “Next question.”

Guns in Schools

The governor’s year-end press conference ca me a day after Attorney General Mike DeWine said he was open to allowing local school boards to decide to arm trained principals, teachers or school staff to provide an immediate means of responding to shooting incidents.

And it came a day before Kasich signed into law a bill that, among other provisions, will allow guns stored in cars in the Ohio Statehouse parking garage.

“The experts are going to look at this, and they’re going to come back and make recommendations on a whole host of things,” Kasich said, indicating that his administration was considering school safety issues. “Let ideas get out on the table, and we’ll figure out once they’re out there what makes the most sense, working with our partners and many interested parties,” the governor said.


1NoBS(2841 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

Kasich thinks if he doesn't announce his plans to go to war with all of organized labor in the state, the way he did prior to the SB5 debacle, they'll be caught off guard when he takes his first cheap shot. He's wrong.

Ohioans are electing Republicans to the state government, yet Kasich's approval numbers remain abysmally low.

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2redeye1(5677 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

gdog Kasich is the first Governor who seems to be helping Ohio get back on track. It takes some sacrifices by all of us. I don't even want to imagine what shape Ohio would be in if we still had Stricklin or any other D party member running our state. He must be doing a good job because none of the local demoncrats have said a word on what he is doing.So quit whining and get on board because if I have my way he will be here for awhile.

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3DSquared(1788 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

Kasich is the only Ohio Gov in a while who knows how to balance a budget. He is fighting for middle class. Unions are only about 6% of workers. The press just plays them up like they're significant. Most of your younger workers even snicker when someone says they belong to a union.

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