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The governor touted the state’s job creation under his watch

Published: Tue, March 18, 2014 @ 12:00 a.m.

Kasich touts job creation in address to Mahoning Valley McKinley Club


Gov. John Kasich, the keynote speaker Monday night at the Mahoning Valley McKinley Club’s 99th annual banquet in Niles, spoke about how growing up with financial struggles made him the person he is today.

By David Skolnick



Gov. John Kasich, seeking re-election, touted job creation in the state under his leadership, saying when he took over in January 2011 that Ohio was 48th in the nation in job growth and new statistics show it is No. 5 over the past three years.

The Republican governor was the keynote speaker Monday at the Mahoning Valley McKinley Club’s 99th annual banquet in the Niles McKinley Memorial Auditorium. It was Kasich’s fourth time as the event’s main speaker.

Before his 40-minute speech, including 15 minutes talking about his childhood growing up with financial struggles in McKees Rocks, Pa., Kasich spoke with reporters, focusing much of the conversation on job creation.

Updated employment data Monday from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show Ohio was No. 5 in job creation since January 2011, when Kasich became governor, and Ohio is No. 1 in the Midwest since January 2011.

“We’re up 238,000 jobs, and we have to keep going,” he said. “We know we’re on the right track now.”

Kasich added: “Overall, I’m really, really pleased with the progress we’re seeing.”

The state’s unemployment rate of 6.9 percent is above the national average of 6.6 percent, however.

The campaign of Democrat Ed FitzGerald, the Cuyahoga County executive seeking the gubernatorial seat, sees it differently.

“For us, it’s pretty simple: 400,000 Ohioans are still unemployed,” said Lauren Hitt, his campaign spokeswoman. Kasich “shouldn’t be doing victory laps. Middle-class Ohioans are working harder, working multiple jobs, working longer hours — and they’re paying more in taxes thanks to Gov. Kasich.”

Kasich said he inherited an $8 billion deficit when he took over as governor and the state now has a $1.5 billion surplus.

When asked if various cuts, including to local governments, and an increase in the state sales tax played roles in Ohio’s financial turnaround, Kasich talked about continuing to cut the state’s income tax, and increasing education funding.

He added: “I don’t have much to say about the criticism because it’s just, whatever, you know, figure out a way to criticize it. It doesn’t bother me. I don’t pay much attention to it.”

Playing off Kasich’s “Ohio miracle” comment from 2012, Daniel McElhatton, FitzGerald’s communications director, said, “There’s been nothing miraculous about John Kasich’s economy for the middle-class families of the Mahoning Valley.”

During his speech, Kasich said, “A big part of my responsibility on Earth is to help people who cannot help themselves.”

That includes, he said, expanding vocational education, fighting the abuse of heroin, which he called “an epidemic,” and helping the mentally ill.

The annual event, which brings together Republicans from Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties, honors William McKinley, the nation’s 25th president who was born in Niles on Jan. 29, 1843.


1Southside_Res(172 comments)posted 6 months, 1 week ago

What a joke! Traded good paying middle class jobs for minimum wage paying jobs!!! How is that any accomplishment?! And, all those jobs created? None of them were here in Mahoning County. Why doesn't he just drag his worthless a$$ on to the train and go back to Columbus?

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2jeratboy(127 comments)posted 6 months, 1 week ago

If I was the governor I would create the jobs where the people voted for me. That is one thing this Valley never learned. They complain about a person running for office, call them every bad thing imaginable, and then get upset when he doesn't help the area.

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3anothermike(211 comments)posted 6 months ago

First of all, the amount of "jobs" created are doubtful. Secondly, nothing in the Mahoning Valley. Small wonder this area doesn't vote for Republicans and especially teabag republicans. We haven't had a Governor on either side of the aisle in decades that focused on the sagging, lingering sluggish economy here in Northeastern Ohio....

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4DwightK(1256 comments)posted 6 months ago

If this governor wanted to create jobs he would send some state money back to cities to help them fight blight by demolishing abandoned properties. If he released a few hundred million he could help employ construction crews and help cities with crime problems.

But, no, we need a billion dollar rainy day fund.

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5theotherside(333 comments)posted 6 months ago

Kasich is trying to remake himself just in time for the election. He would have you believe that he should be canonized because "...a big part of my responsibility on earth..." And while he's doling out his blessings, he's closing the books on public scrutiny of JobsOhio because he knows better and the public doesn't. What are you hiding Johnny?

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6musicman77(14 comments)posted 6 months ago

Why is it the people of this valley are NEVER satisfied with anything? That I'm entitled mentality is why so many folks here are lazy & unemployed. Unions & their ideals started out good intentions & all but then found greed & political power. From there steel mills & auto makers got greedy & never satisfied & the valley goes to hell in a hand basket. Let someone come in & create some jobs locally & see the union thugs protesting outside while people try to shop & save a buck or 2. Added stupidity is like the cherry on top of our collective sundae. Democrats with the give it all away mentality don't seem to realize that someone has to pay for this stuff.... any guesses who?

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7cathylukasko(116 comments)posted 6 months ago

Sadly, Liberal Democrats will whine eternally (just like at the Federal level - ie: BLAME BUSH) . But it was their Strickland who left OH with an $8 billion deficit, while handing out Obama stimulus money to the UNIONS. Finally, we have a real leader who will get reelected by a landslide. Ohioans are smarter than you think!

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8walter_sobchak(1910 comments)posted 6 months ago

If JobsOhio is hiding something and our state is #5 in the US in job growth, then maybe they should hide some more stuff and we could be #1. Public employees do not need to organize in a union as they can enjoy civil service protection. Let's remember just how big a buffoon Teddy Strickland was as governor. Tie or not, Kasich is head and shoulders above him. JobsOhio conducting closed meetings is nothing compared to the idiocy out in the open that was perpetrated on the citizens of Ohio by Strickland (and Bob Taft).

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9UticaShale(854 comments)posted 6 months ago

You can't argue with success, was down in Lisbon's Treasurers office, asked the locals how's the economy, all smiles! Kasich is dragging Ohio from a "Taker" state to a "Production" powerhouse.
I can't wait till he allows the utility companies to disconnect the FrackPots gas! :')

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10Ianacek(909 comments)posted 6 months ago

Governments play a role in ensuring an efficient marketplace , but they don't actually create jobs . Only the private sector does that Sometimes Governments claim to have created jobs by enlarging the state payroll , but only by destroying at least as many private sector jobs through additional taxation .

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11AnotherAverageCitizen(1174 comments)posted 6 months ago

“A big part of my responsibility on Earth is to help people who cannot help themselves.”

Just imagine what the repub's on here would write if Pres. Obama spoke this same statement. Oh yea, its when Obama says jobs are created it is the Rupubs that won't accept the new numbers. They just say since people quit looking for a job, doesn't mean they found a job.

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12AnotherAverageCitizen(1174 comments)posted 6 months ago

Evio aka spinner,

Say it how you want. I know darn well the backlash President Obama would get from the same statement.

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13kurtw(848 comments)posted 6 months ago

Eivo you're being too hard on gdog!- c'mon now, he's said some good things in all those posts- Let me think... Mmm, let me think...

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