Kasich, the born again truth-telling, everyman moderate
"Do you know how crazy this election is?" he shouted during a pre-debate rally in Ohio on Tuesday. "Let me tell you something. I've about had it with these people. Let me tell you why. We got one candidate that says we ought to abolish Medicaid and Medicare. You ever heard anything so crazy as that, telling our people in this country who are seniors or about to be seniors that we're going to abolish Medicaid or Medicare.
He's talking about Ben Carson's loopy health care statements. But Carson isn't alone in this by any means.
Libertarian platform 1980:
"We favor the abolition of Medicare and Medicaid programs."
You may recall that the person running for Vice president on that 1980 Libertarian ticket was a guy by the name of David Koch.
The Kochs reportedly do not like Kasich because he took medicaid money and once said that when he dies and goes to heaven, St. Peter is going to want to know what he did to help the poor not how much money he made. This was heresy. Also too, he was rude to a rich woman friend of theirs.
Still, plenty of others have wanted to abolish all the safety net programs including Social Security, Milton Friedman for instance. Ronald Reagan said that Medicare would spell the end of America as we know it and suggested turning the Social Security system into a private savings program 50 years ago.
Here's another one: Ron Paul Calls Social Security and Medicare Unconstitutional, Compares Them to ‘Slavery’
Back in the 60s and 70s it was an article of faith that the programs would have to be killed. More recently, they've been a bit more wily about their plans. Still, we had headlines like this just recently, remember?
No, they don't come right out and say that's what they're doing. They just plan to kill he programs slowly, painfully over time.
Back when Kasich was the Paul Ryan of his day, they had a government shutdown over the budget. And he was very much involved. Here's how that went:
Domenici said the measure, a revised version of a plan proposed by Senate Minority leader Thomas Daschle, R-South Dakota, would spend $300 billion more than Republicans have proposed through 2002. He and Kasich said it did not overhaul Medicare, welfare and other social programs enough.
I'm not saying that Kasich is a Medicare abolisher, per se. But it's not fair to make him out as a big defender of the program either. He's a Republican. Don't forget his finest hour:
In April 1995, Budget Committee chairman John Kasich (R-Ohio) muscled through the House of Representatives the Contract with America budget plan. It was a towering achievement by Washington standards. Three cabinet departments--Commerce, Education, and Energy--were to be eliminated. Hundreds of small government programs and several large ones--from the National Endowment for the Arts, to mass transit grants, to the federal helium reserve, to the peanut subsidy program--were to be canceled. In short, it would have dramatically halted the government's fiscal expansion of the past 40 years.
I just point this out in case anyone gets the idea that John Kasich is some kind of moderate. He isn't. Just because the Koch brothers don't like him, it doesn't mean we should.