John Kasich: Thank you, Doctor. You know, I’ve decided to run for President because the time to fix America is now, not tomorrow, but right now. The time to make tough decisions and get results even if they’re not popular, sometimes you got to make decisions even when sometimes people don’t like it is now. Because if we continue to hesitate America will pay a very high price.
We’ve seen economic stagnation, bickering in Washington, paralysis in the White House as the world becomes more dangerous. And nothing, nothing is happening right now to turn things around. And this about your country, this is about your future. You know, we seem sometimes just to be hanging in space. We’re not going forward, we’re not going backward, but we’re just waiting for the next bad thing to happen to us. In my lifetime I can’t remember a time when our nation waits for bad things to happen to us. We need to take control of our future, and we’ve got to do it right now.
That’s why I'm laying out a strategy today that will help us produce the results that we need. Folks, all the politics, all the focus groups, all the polls, all the TV ratings need to go out the window and we need to come together, we need to come together to do what’s in the best interest of our country, lead. Sometimes it’s lonely, lead. No popularity polls, just get the job done. And it starts with the single most important thing that we can do, which is to grow American prosperity in the 21st Century. Creating the climate for job growth is one of our greatest moral purposes.
When we have jobs we can take care of our families. We can participate in the life of our communities. And most important, we can reach our God given potential to live a life that we were made to live. A strong economy also makes possible the military. That’s what keeps us safe and secure. It’s the fundamental purpose of the federal government and it allows us to be able to take care of each other when times are particularly tough. Let me be clear, the government, the government does not create jobs, Americans do.
We do it by our creativity, by our risk-taking and by our hard work. Therefore, the first thing that Washington must do is to get out of the way because when government steps back we can step forward and after all isn’t this country about all of us, not the big shots in Washington? It’s about us in our communities, in our families, here in a great community college. You know, government I’ve always believed should be the last resort never the first resort.
When government is the first resort it oversteps its bounds. You know, with taxes that are too high, spending we can’t afford, and red tape that kills jobs. We shouldn’t let Washington do things that we can do better for ourselves right back here at home. Those folks way far away they can’t run our lives. We’ve got to run our lives. You know, America is a large and dynamic place. Getting it growing again is not about checking off a few boxes with these focus group policy proposals that are disconnected from reality and we’ve seen them. Nor is it about just being a good administrator. It’s about having a vision.
It’s about an underlying conservative philosophy for getting America back to work. Then you need to bring people together and then you must have the strength to get results. Talk is cheap. Standing on a corner and yelling and screaming is like a clanging bell if you cannot accomplish anything. In my life, you know, I’ve done things and have accomplished things throughout my career. I led the effort to balance the federal budget for the first time in a generation. It wasn’t easy, folks. You step on a lot of toes when you shake things from top to bottom. Many people opposed it.
A lot of fighting, but we did it and it produced results. But Washington took its eye off the ball. When I left with my friends who stood in the breach and balanced a federal budget, when we left Washington took its eye off the ball and our country has suffered. In Ohio my beloved Ohio we’re getting results now. With my leadership we turned an $8 billion budget shortfall, almost 20 percent of our general operating funds into a $2 billion surplus. We cut taxes by $5 billion, the most of any sitting governor, current sitting governor in America today. And we helped Ohioans create more than 300,000 jobs. 300,000 people who have risen.
Of course, these aren’t just numbers. They are people’s lives and people’s families. Strong leaders keep the people they serve at the center of all they do because leadership is not about self, it’s not about me, it’s about service. Every American, everywhere across our country is in my mind’s eye today, especially the people that I grew up in, with in McKees Rocks. Where if the wind blew the wrong way they found themselves out of work. They played by the rules, they took care of their families and their communities, they are in my mind’s eye. And today I lay out my vision for lifting our nation by reclaiming our power, by reclaiming our money and by reclaiming our influence from Washington.
The first thing that we must do to get government out of our way is to start with a budget. As President I will immediately, I will immediately put us on a path to a balanced budget and I will get it done within eight years. I went to a meeting the other day where they said they could do it by 2030. Too long, too much debt. Within the first 100 days we will have that plan to balance the budget in eight years and to keep it balanced I will start the process to amend our Constitution to require Washington to balance its budget every single year like states and like families in America.
We need a constitutional amendment to force them to balance their budget and to do its job and I hope you will support me in that. A balanced budget helps create jobs because it makes more room in the economy for businesses to thrive and to create jobs. Right over here you can see the federal debt clock. $18 trillion plus, it’s pretty amazing, isn’t it? That’s what we’ve rung up and that’s what you have to pay. To the students here today think about what this means for you.
It means $57,000 in debt that each one of you, $57,000 in debt that each one of you have to carry. And that includes my two 15-year-old twin daughters, putting that on their back. We’ve got to stop it. And think what you could do with this money to help yourself without having to pay that debt if we could begin to erase it. I served in Congress and led the committee that wrote the government’s budget, and I was the chief architect of the first balanced budget in a generation. When we balanced the budget it unleashed job creation and began paying down the debt.
In Ohio I have written three balanced budgets and the last one just three-and-a-half months ago. This is something that I know how to do and something that I have done throughout my career. So you say how do you do it? Well, it starts by setting our priorities. And that’s, that’s pretty difficult but then having the courage to make choices that could be unpopular. In our case we need to reform entitlements to make them provide better services and control their skyrocketing, unsustainable growth rates. And let me be clear, you can have no balanced budget without dealing with the problem of entitlements.
To change those entitlements in such a way that we can make them sustainable but yet delivering the services that our people need. And I have done that before and we will do it again. There is also plenty of well, here’s a surprise. There’s plenty of waste in Washington’s day to day operations that can be cut. Shocking, isn’t it? For instance, do we really need two different agencies inspecting catfish? The Food and Drug Administration already inspects all of our seafood, so why do we need the Department of Agriculture to spend 14 million a year inspecting catfish also? 14 million, here it sounds like a lot of money. In Washington they leave that on the floor every night when they turn out the lights, but we’re gonna clean it up.
Or how about this example? This one really burns you up. The U.S. EPA has spent over 15 million on PR consultants since 2000 in addition to their already 200 person in-house PR staff. So they spend 15 million hiring outside PR people so that they can tell us what a great job they’re doing while they already have a staff that tells us how great they’re doing. I don’t think government should be spending that much of our money to try to convince us to like it. Just do your job and cut out the waste. These are just two examples of how we could easily save or where we could find more money to send to important priorities like defense.
We need to spend more money on our military while also streamlining the Pentagon bureaucracy so that the men and women in harm’s way get the maximum benefit from every new defense dollar. I spent 18 years of my career in Washington fighting the bureaucracy and the red tape and the duplication and the delay in the Department of Defense. We need to rebuild our defense, but we need to streamline and rebuild the bureaucracy inside that building. And as President I will look across that river every single day to make sure that the money that we spend is going to help our men and women in the military and not bureaucracies.
Well, America’s taxes are also too high. We’ll cut them so Americans have more money in their own pockets, more control over their own lives and better job opportunities. Look, you know better how to spend the money you have in your pocket then sending it to somebody in Washington so they can figure out what’s best for you. In Ohio, as I’ve mentioned, we cut taxes by 5 billion while turning that $8 billion projected shortfall into $2 billion surplus. As President I'm gonna cut taxes here also. And we will not only cut taxes but we will balance our budget in eight years, both of them. Because to balance a budget you need economic growth while at the same time you manage your spending. Both of them lead us to a balanced budget which ultimately can lead us to a place where we begin to pay down our national debt.
President Reagan, he set the top income tax rate at 28 percent and unleashed a decade of growth. That’s where America’s top rate should be today. We’re also gonna kill the death tax because no one should have to visit the undertaker and the tax collector on the same day. Small businesses should be able to pass those businesses on to their children without having to sell the business to pay the taxes, most of which they’ve already paid. Low, and by the way, we killed the death tax in Ohio and small businesses really appreciate it. Low income Americans also need tax cuts targeted just for them.
We increased the Earned Income Tax credit by 10 percent and we eliminate fraud in the system in order to save taxpayers money and reward low income workers at the same time. The philosophy is as we bring down the lower rate to provide incentives for more investment, more risk-taking and more hard work and more job creation we also want to provide the tax relief to people who are at the lower end so they have incentives to work harder and get ahead, not be punished because they put more time in. It’s an accordion. Bring the top down and help those at the bottom to become more successful. For businesses the top rate will be 25 percent.
This brings us back to a level that is globally competitive, to help job creators get the machinery and equipment to grow and be more productive they’ll be able to deduct the full cost of those investments in the same year that they buy them. Folks, when business has the incentive to put the equipment in the operation so workers can be more productive workers will get higher wages. And in our state wages are growing faster than the national average.
I mean, it helps these businesses to create more jobs and of course to pay those higher wages. And by cutting tax rates and simplifying the tax code we’re gonna also make it possible for businesses to bring back to the U.S. the money they’ve been storing overseas. Companies are making profits. We believe they have an estimated $2 trillion in profits that are sitting in Europe, that they’re beginning to invest in Europe instead of the United States of America. Wouldn’t you like to have that money come back here so they begin to invest in American jobs and American factories and in American equipment?
Well that’s exactly what we’re going to do. We’re gonna cut those taxes because they really do want to invest here. But we’ve clobbered them and we’ve made it very difficult for them to bring that money home. You talk about a stimulus package? This could be the most successful stimulus package I’ve ever seen by letting the private sector do the things that they want to do to invest here in the United States of America. And to spark a wave of research and innovation we must strengthen the research and development tax credit especially for, for small businesses.
So when you young people create a small business and you’re inventing the new Google we’re gonna give you an incentive to do it, make our lives easier. In addition to lower taxes America needs a fair and honest tax collection system. Look, I got some words here on a page. We’re gonna change the IRS. No more something that we live in fear of, that has bias, that, that has targeted people. No more, we will clean up the IRS and that is one thing everybody in America will agree to. So there are other parts of our government that are just as inefficient as the IRS.
The red tape and regulations that steadily flow from government agencies are drowning our job creators. They often don’t reflect the will of Congress or have regard for sound science or the law. We can fix this by returning commonsense to agency regulations. We start by giving America a one year break from all new major regulations so we can catch our breath. No more rules and regulations from Washington for one year so we can begin to get on top of this. We’ll rebuild our regulatory system and rid it of the abuses and the mistakes we’ve seen in recent years.
Bad regulations can do more harm than good so we will require real cost benefit analysis. In other words, the benefit ought to outweigh the cost and we ought to apply it. We give lip service to it. But we’re gonna change it and we’re gonna ask Congress to make this mandatory. And I will also call on Congress to do their job to require that any new regulation that costs more than $100 million goes back to them for approval. No more regulators out there just passing all these laws that they were never elected to do. Congress has a responsibility to control it and we will make sure that it happens.
And to make sure that job creators have a fair chance when they object to an agency’s decision we’re gonna create a court of commonsense. And it’s gonna be made up of real Americans who I will appoint as the President who will review agency decisions that we think does not reflect commonsense. You’ll have somewhere to go and someone who will listen to you and perhaps even someone who will fight for you. Today a small business that wants to fight an EPA decision can sue in federal court.
Yeah, try that, right? And go bankrupt hiring lawyers. Or it must use the agency’s own appeals process staffed by its own bureaucrats. So we go to the agency and we appeal and the people who work in the agency tell us if we’re right and wrong. That really works out great, doesn’t it? So we need a better way and we’ll provide one that uses commonsense and one that is truly fair and independent. Speaking of regulation, there’s probably been no single area of America that has been so strangled by regulations than energy.
Why has Washington worked so hard to keep America from harnessing its energy advantage? We have to restore commonsense and we have to set people free to make us energy independent in North America and particularly here in America. We need a all of the above energy policy. We’ll make sure we produce more from more energy from oil and gas, from nuclear, from coal that we dig clean and burn, alternatives and renewables, and anything else that we can find and we’ll do it responsibly. We need it all and it should come from right here. We cannot continue to rely on energy from overseas.
Our goal will be to meet the nation’s energy needs from North America and to sustain it, and with the right policies in place we can work with our closest neighbors, Canada and Mexico, to take care of our own needs without having to constantly depend on far off countries and dangerous parts of the world. And that means approving the Keystone Pipeline to get more oil safely and quickly into the United States. Enough with the delays, we will approve the Keystone Pipeline because energy freedom is a matter of national security. We don’t want wars when it’s all about energy.
When we can do what we need to do in America to be energy independent and we are on the road to getting it done. And when I am President we will accomplish it. Just as we set ourselves free from energy from overseas we’ve got to be smarter and stronger about trading with countries overseas. You know, we’re inventors. We love to make things in America. We make the best products in the world and open markets can create new jobs for us right here at home. Trade can also make the world more stable and advance our national interest. But I have to tell you, too often Washington gives us the false choice between free trade or no trade.
We have to reject that and we have to become better negotiators of the trade packs that we want to put in place. And I will tell you we should only agree to deals that are fair to American workers. And you know what that means? That includes taking a firm stand against countries that cheat, that sponsor cyberattacks to steal our inventions, or those countries that manipulate their currencies to get an advantage over the American worker. You understand this in New Hampshire, we understand it in Ohio. When people cheat we will call them on it and we will have an expedited process to stand up for the American worker.
And that is critical when we talk about the issue of trade. You know, we can’t let these issues delay whenever we see violations of trade agreements because bureaucratic wheels grind so slowly. We’ll bring them fast, we’ll make a, make sure that we do a better job of protecting America from getting ripped off. It’s essential that we are open to trade for a variety of reasons, but it’s also important that we enforce those agreements effectively. You know, the jobs we talk about will not be in Washington. They’re not gonna be created by government.
They’re gonna be created by Americans in towns like Nashua and Manchester and in my hometown of Westerville. That’s where we live and where the power of our nation comes from. It’s time to make Washington respect that again and as President I'm going to work to transfer power, money, and influence out of Washington and back to where we live, where we work, in the states and the towns across this country. And it starts with education. Washington isn’t the nation’s school principal and it sure isn’t its teacher. It’s time Washington stopped micromanaging education. Education is a local issue to be decided by parents, our communities and our local educators.
Yes, we need high standards, but the federal government shouldn’t set them or control them. I will reduce the power of the Department of Education. I will consolidate more than 100 federal programs, 100 programs, red tape, bureaucracy, bureaucrats, and I will bundle them into four and I will send those resources back to the states for us to run education ourselves right at the state and local level. As President I look forward to traveling the country to share the best ideas for our states and for local school districts that are improving education.
Like the best ideas come from right here. And we need to do a better job of sharing those things that work, exciting things in the 21st Century that give our young people the tools they need to succeed. We’re gonna take this approach across the federal government’s power structure. Wherever we can we must take its programs back to the states so they can have the flexibility to respond in their unique ways. One size fits all doesn’t work. We can do it with infrastructure, not just with education but with infrastructure. The interstate system is long finished. And states already oversee highway design and construction.
There is no need for a costly federal highway bureaucracy that takes our money and gives it to somebody else. I will return federal gas taxes to the states leaving a sliver with the federal government for truly national needs, then I will downsize the Department of Transportation and give it a smaller role supporting states with research and safety standards. Federal spending will go down, resources for highways and transit can go up, and states will be able to work faster and more efficiently. You keep your money and you fix your roads the way that you want to.
No more taking our gas tax money, shipping it off to Washington, they cut some off the top and send you less back. Keep it right here in New Hampshire for what you need, and if you don’t need it you can send it over to Ohio. We can figure out how to spend it. It’s critical that we give states the freedom to help Americans keep their job skills sharp and stay competitive. That’s what this place is all about. Training and education is a lifelong endeavor. It can’t stop after you graduate from high school, the vocational school, the community college or the university. It’s lifelong. Right now Washington doesn’t let states pursue their own ideas. The result is that workers usually can’t get training help unless they lose their jobs first.
So much of the money only gets sent to the states with the requirement that you have train people once they lose their job rather than training them while they have their job so they don’t lose their job. That’s the Washington mentality for you. So you know what we’re gonna do? We’re gonna wrap up all those job training programs and send them to each and every state to deal with their workers in their economic situation and take it out of Washington, D.C. and out of that bureaucracy and set ourselves free to make sure our people can be prosperous in the workplace. And I hope you agree.
I’ll send Medicaid back to the states as well. Right now Washington makes it so hard to try new ideas that it seems as though nothing ever better gets done. In Ohio we are making great progress with private sector health insurance, better chronic disease management and the practice of paying for value not just volume. These same kind of ideas can also be put to work helping restrain costs in the federal government’s healthcare program for seniors. That program, Medicare. So it is fiscally strong and there to help them. All these ideas together can help us to begin improving health outcomes and getting costs under control. We know how to do this and we can do it if Washington just was smarter about the need to try a new approach and let people innovate and let me be clear.
We have a program to make sure that Medicare is set on a firm basis and that Medicaid can be sent back to the states, something that we have been fighting for since the middle of the 90s so that governors and legislators can come up with more innovative and practical ways to treat the poor and also to have a Medicare system that will last for these young people not just for mom and dad today. And the same is also true in welfare, cutting Washington strings so that states can design their own plans to let America actually help people move up and out of poverty.
In Ohio we’ve tried to be very innovated guided by the same idea that my mother used to say. It’s a sin not to help somebody who needs help, but it is equally s sin to continue to help someone to needs to learn how to help themselves. At this very time we are asking the federal government for permission to allow our people on public assistance to be able to get education so they can get a job and we’ve got to ask the federal government to approve this. It’s nonsense. Let me run it. Let my legislator run it. Let us tailor a welfare program in Ohio that you can learn from here, and one here that we can learn from in my state and all across this country. This is our country and we make the choices that decide its future.
If we want security and prosperity, lives with good futures, opportunities for our kids and something to pass on to those we love we need to make it happen and we need to make it happen now. We’ve got to get our government out of the way, balance our budget, cut taxes. We need to take back our power and our money and our influence and get the red tape and regulators back under control. Let’s win our energy freedom. Let’s get smart on trade. You see it all works together as one strategy and if we want to see results now we’re gonna have to fight for it. I'm fighting for the 50-year-old woman who lost who job in this bad economy. And for the businesses that could grow and give her a new opportunity if they weren’t drowning in high taxes and red tape. I'm fighting for the startups with breakthrough ideas that could hire the single mom struggling to provide a future for her kids.
I'm fighting for the men and women whose wages have been flat for seven years. I'm fighting for the young people with their whole lives ahead of them wondering if they will have the same opportunities as the generation before them. The ideas I'm putting out today are for every American who wants a better and brighter future, they are for all of us. Is it easy? Are you kidding me? Oh, it’s extremely hard to get this done, but this is doable. This is doable and achievable to help our country. There are gonna be a lot of people working against us. That’s inevitable. I have faced it all of my lifetime. There’s gonna be skeptics, but I'm gonna tell you I become President relying on you for your help and support we’ll get it done because I’ve done it before. By building a great team that works with me in rallying support from people like you.
We are going to come together and rally people behind the changes we all know that need to be made. We’ve got to make them happen now. No more fooling around, no more delay, no more confusion, no more inexperience, no more polls, no more focus groups. Now we need to get this done. Again, when you leave they’re gonna ask you what did he say? He’s gonna balance the federal budget, he did it before. He’s going to cut taxes, he’s done it before. He’s gonna send programs back to where we can get our hands on them and fix them to suit who we are so that we can solve our problems, he’s done it before. He’s gonna control the regulators he says. Well, in Ohio we have with our commonsense initiative that repeals silly rules and regulations. He says he wants to develop energy and make us independent.
Well our energy industry in Ohio is unfettered and it’s working and it’s exciting. He says he wants to change welfare so we help those people who need help, but also ask them to assume personal responsibility. He’s doing that in Ohio. He said we need to stand up and protect the American worker while at the same time we reach across the oceans to make sure that our products can find markets. But if we get cheated he’ll fight back. You can count on it. Folks, I got into this race I don’t want to write another book because I'm in politics, I don’t need another television show. I'm doing this because the good Lord has blessed me. And throughout the course of my lifetime he’s given me the skills, he’s given me the friends, he’s given me the instincts and the judgment to make be able to make our nation strong, respected all over the world again. I'm gonna carry this out, but I need you.
I need you right here in New Hampshire and all across this country. No more politics, no more nonsense, we will get down to it and America will be a brighter, stronger, more hopeful place as a result of what we can do over the course of the next eight years. Thank you all very much and God bless you.
Lucille Jordan: Thank you. Thank you, Governor Kasich. The Governor has been kind enough and generous with his time to participate in our student forum, first in the nation primary forum. But before we begin I would like to introduce Dr. Ross Gittell, our Chancellor to talk about the forum. Doctor?
Ross Gittell: (Inaudible). Thank you, Governor Kasich. New Hampshire’s community colleges are hosting forums across our seven colleges so students get to engage with the candidates and ask questions with the candidates. As you talked about America’s future our students at Nashua Community College and across our community colleges, our 27,000 students are the future of our country.
And they have a huge stake in this election and we want to take advantage of the 100th anniversary of New Hampshire’s first in the nation primary to make sure students have a voice in this campaign and get to directly engage with the candidates. And our students are here, they’re looking forward to this opportunity and we thank you, Governor Kasich, for you taking their questions.
Lucille Jordan: Our first student is Ryan Long. He’s an economics major and he hails from Amherst, New Hampshire. Ryan?
Ryan Long: How you doing tonight, Governor Kasich?
John Kasich: I'm doing, I'm doing very well.
Ryan Long: That’s good.
John Kasich: You know why God invented economists? To make astrologers look accurate.
Ryan Long: Sounds good to me. Governor Kasich, as a proponent of balancing the budget while lowering taxes what sectors of government spending would you advocate as President lowering or possibly even eliminating funding to?
John Kasich: Yeah. Well, we first of all, on the non-defense discretionary we’re going to freeze that for eight years as a starting point. At the end I'm not sure it will even fair that well as we dig in and get under the hood. We will increase defense spending and we’ll be able to reduce a lot of the backlog that we need because defense is our primary purpose. And we’re gonna deal with these entitlements just like we have in Ohio with Medicaid.
We’ll continue to reform that. It could be done nationwide. We need to make sure that we’re able to stabilize Medicare and we’ve got a lot of detail about how we believe we can do that. And we want to raise we want to cut taxes because if you both cut taxes and control spending you can actually get to a balanced budget. But I have to tell you, young man, I got to count on you because there’s gonna be a lot of people whining out there about you can’t touch me.
But we’re used to that. We just have to make sure that we have the discipline to get it done. Because when we get it done you’re gonna get a job. That’s what this is all about. It’s all about raising America to a level where people really have opportunity and we have job creation.
Ryan Long: Thank you.
John Kasich: You’re welcome.
Ryan Long: And my second question is in regards to Social Security. With retirement age for collecting Social Security being increased to 67 for people born after the year 1960 younger people have found themselves less likely to have a job. In fact, people between the ages of 20 and 24 have an unemployment rate of 9.1 percent according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is over this is near four percent higher than the national average. How would you address the issue of national security so older people can have a safe retirement and young people can at the same time have job stability?
John Kasich: Well, you know, there’s a lot of people that a lot of 18 year olds think that have a better chance of seeing a UFO than a Social Security check. In 1999 I proposed a solution a fix to Social Security that would have stabilized it for as I recall about 100 years. And that would have left our seniors okay, the baby boomers would have started at a slightly lower rate than what they would have gotten and our young people would have been able to get two percent private accounts where you could be connected to the economy just like federal workers.
That was about 16 years ago and they did nothing. So now we’re in a deeper hole and we’re looking at all the possible solutions for Social Security. We’ll be able to talk about that in more depth later but I will tell you there’s about four things we think we need to think about. We need to deal with the issue of early retirement, we need to look at the issue of raising the retirement age, we do need to have an indexes of prices and not just prices and wages. And those things will get us in a pretty good place and we have to think about a disconnect between what we pay in and the benefits we get out.
But Social Security is so sensitive it has to be stabilized and I got to let you in on something. We’re gonna have to include some Democrats in this who understand this program needs to be fixed. And we’ll have more to say on that which is a separate issue from getting us in a position of balancing this federal budget today. Okay?
Ryan Long: Thank you very much, Governor Kasich.
John Kasich: All right. Thank you.
Ryan Long: Our second student is Amanda Dulude and she’s a communications major and she hails (inaudible). Amanda?
Amanda Dulude: Good morning, Governor Kasich.
John Kasich: Good morning.
Amanda Dulude: So my question also involves Social Security. Governor Kasich, according to various news sources such as Washington Times, The New York Times, and the Washington Examiner, Social Security Disability payments will run out by the year 2016. I understand recently you said some people will have to quote unquote get over Social Security cuts. What about our Granite State citizens who have paid into their Social Security their entire lives? Can and how you will, can and how will you assure them they’ll still be taken care of?
John Kasich: Yeah. Well, first of all, I think in the area of Social Security Disability there have been a lot of shows and I think including 60 Minutes that’s talked about this program. Of course when somebody is disabled that they have to be in a position of where they can get help. But we’ve got to make sure that people aren’t able to just approach a legal system to get them to go out and try to qualify for something that they really shouldn’t be on.
So we’ve got to look at Social Security Disability. My mind isn’t closed on that. I'm not sure about it but it’s something we have to carefully look at. Now here’s what the story is on on the benefits. You see if we start Social Security benefits with an indexes that is lower, okay, then you’re gonna get your Social Security. It’s gonna be slighty lower and it will contribute to saving the program for the life of it which you want anyway. And just so you know we were in a forum here in New Hampshire and we were all kind of chuckling about where we start.
John Kasich: Most people don’t know what their initial benefit is. I don’t how many of you know what your initial benefit is here? That you’ve calculated it down to the dollar? Okay. There’s about two of you, okay. And I said look, you know, we’re gonna have to start a little bit lower. And she said well I don’t know, I said well we’re just gonna have to it and we all kind of chuckled. I said, you know, we’re all gonna have to get over it. But you know, that’s, that’s part of what happens when you say things. It’s part of why we don’t get anywhere because we get distracted by, you know, a criticism. I'm not gonna get, I'm not going to be in a position where I'm gonna be distracted. All of my lifetime I’ve taken heat.
I’ve taken it from Republican Presidents, I’ve taken it from Republican Party members I’ve taken it from Democrats. If you’re not prepared to take the heat get out of the kitchen, get out of the kitchen okay. Thank you. But I want that program for you and I’ll tell you what else I want, I want you to get a job. And if there’s anything we need to do it’s to emphasize the capability of these community colleges to give you a skill for what you want to do in your lifetime. Skills are the matter those are the words for, not just for you but for my younger daughters who one day will be in a school just like you are today. Thank you.
Amanda Dulude: Thank you, Governor Kasich.
John Kasich: Good job.
Our third student is Nate Madden(sp?) and he’s a liberal arts major and he hails from Nashua. Nate?
John Kasich: How are you?
Nate Madden: Hi.
John Kasich: Good to see you.
Nate Madden: Governor, you served six years as Chairman of House Budget in Ohio and have balanced their budget. What procedures will you take to balance the national budget, and also would you consider modifying the tax code and getting rid of loopholes?
John Kasich: Yeah, you know, I used to say that we always want to look at provisions in the code that were put there by special interest groups. Back in the old days when I was in Congress I used to say if we can reform welfare for poor people we ought to reform welfare for rich people, too, right? I mean, that’s what’s fair is fair. So we would look at all of those.
Sometimes those loopholes are legitimately loopholes and sometimes they’re not, they’re not, they’re necessary. For example, the research and development tax credit. Some might call it a loophole, I consider it essential for the development of new technologies. You have to scour everything. Let me, let me suggest how you do it. You look at every single program. You say is the program working? Is it not working?
You got to remember every program has somebody that supports it. Is it working, is it not working? Can it be privatized? If we see it in the Yellow Pages does government need to do it? Can we make it work better, more effectively? And you just go through all of that and nobody gets a favor. Everything gets looked at appropriately because the time you come off the moral high ground is the minute where it’s pretty hard to lead. So we’ll look at everything including these kinds of things that you call and I used to call loopholes. I used to aggravate everybody when I said that. Do you remember those days, Sununu? So, yeah, we’ll look at everything. Maybe you could come and be a junior partner and help us look at some things.
Nate Madden: Maybe, maybe.
John Kasich: Okay?
Nate Madden: My second question, Governor, would you support a universal basic income that would lighten the burden of poverty on the working class?
Well, that’s our tax bill would, would be in a position where a lot of people wouldn’t be paying income taxes. They would be paying other taxes, significant other taxes, but we’d make sure we give people an incentive and in, you know, here I proposed the Earned Income Tax Credit which I fought for when I was a Congressman. A lot of people in my party didn’t like it. I thought it was important to give people an incentive to be able to rise.
The other thing that we’ve done in Ohio is if you are a working mom we are raising the amount of money you can make to 300 percent of poverty without losing your childcare. There are many rules and regulations that keep you from being able to rise because you lose more than you gain. We have to remove that and make sure we tailor our welfare system to encouraging independence, not continued dependence.
John Kasich: Okay?
Nate Madden: Thank you, Governor.
Lucille Jordan: Our next student is Carolyn Nee and she is a major in international relations and she comes from New Boston, New Hampshire. Carolyn?
Carolyn Nee: Hello. My question for you today is where do you stand on President Barack Obama’s proposed free two year community college? If you are for it can you inform us on how or where the money will come from to pay for it and who will receive it?
John Kasich: Well, after you can give everybody free college we can put a chicken in every pot. We have to pay for things, right?
Carolyn Nee: Yeah.
John Kasich: You would like to have a new car wouldn’t you?
Carolyn Nee: Yes.
John Kasich: Would you like a new car?
Carolyn Nee: That sounds good.
John Kasich: I can’t just give you one for free. But here’s the thing, we have to learn to control the cost of higher education and that comes number one to leadership, Mr. Provost(sp?). That means sometimes you got to aggravate the faculty, the people that work around here to take costs out. In Ohio now we have just had a group of businesspeople come in with a series of about 25 recommendations to reduce costs. And let me give you an example, you’re not gonna believe this. I don’t think so. Ohio, you ever heard of Ohio State?
John Kasich: Yes. It’s a little school in the Midwest and what is your name?
Carolyn Nee: Carolyn.
John Kasich: Carolyn. So, Carolyn, Ohio State’s President, Gordon Gee, who is a great man had a made a decision that he wanted to lease the parking garages and parking lots because he said why is a university running a parking garage? He was fought tooth and nail, he finally got it through, and Ohio State leased those parking lots and parking garages, still maintains control and receives is receiving a half a billion dollars that can be used to help students with scholarships or reduce costs. In Bowling Green they have now outsourced their dining.
Why is a university running a dining facility? It ought to be done by the private sector. And guess what, I understand the students like the food in the private than they did when the university ran it. So we need to scour everything to reduce costs because if these costs keep rising students are just gonna go to online education at a fraction of the cost and it’s gonna become more creative. And let me suggest one other thing. When you enter this school you ought to have somebody who virtually guides you every week.
Carolyn Nee: Yes, sir.
John Kasich: What do you want to be? What do you want to do? What courses are you taking? Are you on track? And I'm here to be your helper. And we need to know what the in demand jobs are so we’re not out there getting an education for basket weaving when there are no basket weaving jobs anymore. The other thing is I don’t believe that universities or community colleges should be paid one dime for overhead. They should be reimbursed by government when a student completes a course or graduates. Anything short of that will result in high costs and without putting you as the at the top of the heap for what our priorities are. Thank you. Did you have another one?
Carolyn Nee: Yes, I do. All right. Should able bodied, mentally capable adults who receive welfare be required to work? If so, how would you monitor this?
John Kasich: Well, we, we, you know, when I was in Congress we worked to say that if you get food stamps and you’re able bodied in areas where you don’t have high unemployment you need to do community service at least 20 hours a week and I think the same is true with welfare. Look, fostering a culture of dependency helps no one. It doesn’t help the person on welfare, and it doesn’t help the children who are in the family.
But let’s not, let’s not think this is easy. You grow up young person, you wake up in the morning, you don’t have a stable family. You hear gunshots and you wonder about going to school. And you don’t have anybody that’s given you the love and the encouragement you need. All of these people are made in the image of the Lord, they are not to be discarded, they are not to be demeaned. They need to be lifted, but you don’t lift them just by giving, you have to expect something back. And that is our philosophy in Ohio. And I want welfare to be sent to you.
No more strings, you do it. You tell me what’s working here, I’ll tell you what’s working in other parts of the country. So it’s about just like my mother used to say, it’s a sin not to help people who need help but it’s equally a sin to continue to help people who need to learn how to help themselves.
John Kasich: But these are difficult problems. And our schools at the local level must be made excellent. And that is not up to a President, it is up to you, us, got to get it done. Thank you.
Carolyn Nee: Thank you.
Lucille Jordan: And our last student speaker is Evan Richardson and he’s a criminal justice major and he hails from Nashua, New Hampshire.
Evan Richardson: Good morning, everyone, Governor. What ideas do you have to reduce the overall debt on student loans in the U.S. and make school more affordable for everyone?
John Kasich: Well, I think first of all, you got to stop the cost drivers. Secondly now that you’re in community college you’re gonna have, I assume are you gonna go on to a four year school at some point or you’re not sure?
Evan Richardson: Yes.
John Kasich: Okay. If you do you’ve already cut your costs, haven’t you?
Evan Richardson: Yeah.
John Kasich: Yeah, because you’re here where it’s less expensive than in the four year. So for some people that’s right and I think I’ve outlined a number of things that we need to do to get on top of this whole cost issue. And oh, also I think in high school you ought to be able to get college credit at the same time you’re getting high school credit. Some students in my state have completed almost an entire year of college when they’re still in high school, and we’re now training teachers to be able to, to get qualified so that when they teach a course the students can get college credit.
It’s a whole number of things but, you know, sometimes let me ask you a question. When you’re a college president today what do you think your goal is for tomorrow? Try to be a college president tomorrow, too. And so sometimes it’s really hard to go against the grain because when you go against the grain everybody gets uptight. But you know what leaders do? Why am I made this way? Because I had a mom that shook things up from top to bottom. She was my model of how you stick and you hang tough even when people are criticizing you. But let me tell you give you a little lesson.
When you believe in something, whatever it is if you’re right and you need to check with your friends even though you don’t have a big crowd you keep pursuing it, and you know what will happen? You will have a crowd and you will be the leader. See, leaders always stand out from the crowd. If they’re in the crowd they’re not a leader. You get too far ahead of the crowd and they can’t hear you or see you. So there’s a certain magic about, a certain skill about knowing how far to get and how to bring the crowd along with you because we can’t do it all yourself. Surround yourself with people who like you, support you, and reinforce you, too. Okay?
Evan Richardson: All right, thank you.
John Kasich: Good luck to you.
Evan Richardson: My second question is...
John Kasich: Oh, you got another question. I thought I was done.
Evan Richardson: One more, one more. What’s an acceptable number of immigrants to let into the U.S. each year and how will you control this number? Our country has always taken pride in opening its doors to immigrants and refugees. What is your plan to help these people without putting a strain on our social services?
John Kasich: Well, I, you know, we have immigration law that limits who comes in and that can all be looked at. But of course now we don’t have any way to protect ourselves from people who just kind of walk into the country. And I was talking to a man that asked me he said I agree with everything that you think on immigration except I'm not in favor of a wall. And I said to him where do you live? And he said well, I live in Texas and I live in Washington, D.C. I said do you lock your doors at night? He said I do. And I said well, shouldn’t a country lock its doors? And so we have to finish that wall, we’ve got to make sure we can control our borders for a whole variety of reasons.
But then we ought to have a little guest worker program so people can come in and out legally and for the ones that are here if they haven’t violated the law we’ll make them pay a penalty. They can get a path to legalization. And, and then I think we can look at our entire immigration program. Because we want to be, I wouldn’t be here today. My mother, you know, her mother couldn’t barely speak English. She’s Yugoslavian. My father’s parents, you know, they came over we weren’t even sure at one point what our real name was because my grandfather may have taken the name of a family that he came over on the boat with.
And if, and if I hadn’t got here I would probably be running for President of Croatia. But I'm, I'm here, you know. So we want to welcome immigrants. It makes us stronger, it makes us better, but we want to control it. And we don’t want people to come here just to get on some benefit. You know, we want people to come here to assimilate themselves, get work, and contribute. Which I believe that most of them do, okay. Thank you.
Evan Richardson: Thank you very much.
Lucille Jordan: Thank you to the students and I would also like to thank their professor, Professor Fontanella(sp?) for her hard work and working with these students in this course. Thank you very much. Governor, we really appreciate your taking the time to meet and speak with our students. And many of our students are also in the audience and I know your commitment to education and being a Buckeye I know your commitment. And we thank Nate for wearing the right colors today. So that was really good. So thank you, and please, join us for a reception following this immediately. It’s over...
John Kasich: Thank you all very much.
Lucille Jordan: Thank you.
John Kasich: Good to see you. I am very big on community colleges.
Ross Gittell: I know you are.
John Kasich: But we need to make sure when kids come in that they got a counselor all the way through.
Ross Gittell: Yeah. I agree with you totally. They need career advice starting in high school.
John Kasich: We’re trying to do that. We need to upgrade the value of guidance counselors. But that’s stuff we need to do.
Ross Gittell: Oh, yeah, to introduce young people to careers and get them on a path.
John Kasich: You should check out what we’re doing in Ohio. Ross Gittell: I know some of what you’re doing.
John Kasich: All right. I mean...
Ross Gittell: I also am friends with Paul Pelletier(sp?). Do you know Paul(sp?)?
John Kasich: Yeah, yeah, sure.
Ross Gittell: Yeah. (Inaudible). And I did get out to Ohio State Buckeye game recently so.
John Kasich: All right.
Ross Gittell: Thank you for meeting our students really important.
John Kasich: All right. Thank you. I enjoyed it.
Ross Gittell: Yeah.
Mark McCabe: Governor, Mark(sp?) and Rita(sp?) McCabe. Welcome to New Hampshire, sir.
John Kasich: Hi. Really.
Rita McCabe: Wonderful to listen to you speak.
John Kasich: Oh, thank you.
Rita McCabe: We really enjoyed it.
John Kasich: Well, it wasn’t the most exciting thing because it was about a lot of policy but I hope you enjoyed it.
Mark McCabe: Yes, sir.
Rita McCabe: Well, that’s what we need to hear. Yeah.
Mark McCabe: We’ve been, we’ve been waiting for a long time to sit and listen to you, sir.
John Kasich: Well, thanks for being here.
Mark McCabe: And I'm really thrilled...
John Kasich: Thank you. Thank you very much.
Mark McCabe: You’re the right man.
John Kasich: God bless.
Rita McCabe: Thank you.
John Kasich: Thank you.
Paul Halloway: Paul Halloway(sp?).
John Kasich: Paul, do I know you?
Paul Halloway: Don’t give me that shit.
Paul Halloway: How you doing?
John Kasich: I'm good. It was nice of you to come today.
Paul Hallloway: Oh, listen I'm chairman of this. I'm chairman of the community colleges.
John Kasich: Oh, I didn’t know that.
Paul Halloway: Yeah.
John Kasich: So we just put out an education program about how to control cost that you’ll want to get your people to get. Because it’s really comprehensive.
Paul Halloway: How about you send it to me?
John Kasich: Alex(sp?), we need to have our higher education plan sent to Paul, okay?
Paul Halloway: Let me give you my card.
Alex, last name unknown: Okay, great.
Unidentified Speaker: Thank you, Governor. I haven’t shaken hands with you since 1999 in the terminal of the (inaudible).
John Kasich: I’ll be darned. Well, hopefully you can help me.
Unidentified Speaker: It’s a real (inaudible) came here for this.
John Kasich: Well, it’s great. I enjoyed being here, look at this. This is perfect.
Unidentified Speaker: Yeah, I saw, I met you in 2000. I'm (inaudible). Could I get you just to sign this for me?
John Kasich: Yeah, yeah.
Unidentified Speaker: Hey, how are you?
Unidentified Speaker: Good to see you.
Unidentified Speaker: Nice to see you.
Unidentified Speaker: Glad you’re here.
John Kasich: Oh, you’re gonna stay with us. Hold on. I want to talk to you.
Unidentified Speaker: I'm not going anywhere.
John Kasich: Give me a second. Yeah, I could ride on the top of one of your cars with no shirt on. This is a good man.
Unidentified Speaker: I think we’re doing the press over there. I know this guy. He’s been telling me how to do my job for 25 years.
John Kasich: Oh, I that sounds like a Kasich. I'm rubbing off on you.
Unidentified Speaker: Very true, very true.
John Kasich: Paul, thanks. You’re doing well? Your wife is well? Tell her I said hello.
Paul Halloway: Yeah, she’s here.
John Kasich: Give me one second to grab (inaudible). Because he’s gonna drive. Hey, Chris(sp?). Yeah.
Amanda Dulude: Governor Kasich, can I get a selfie with you?
John Kasich: Of course.
Amanda Dulude: Okay, hold on. Oh.
John Kasich: Okay.
Amanda Dulude: Thank you.
John Kasich: Are we gonna do, where are we going? John, why don’t you stand with me?
Unidentified Speaker: Wait for the masses to assemble. All right. Got time for a couple questions.
Unidentified Speaker: What’s this do for your campaign do you think, Governor?
John Kasich: Well, look, I'm not I mean, I think it’s good to be able to be talking now. We increasingly will about our programs. And I think that’s, that’s people want to hear specifics and I think that’s good. But I also think this is good for the country, for the debate not just, you know, we got to balance budget, cut, cut taxes, creative, imaginative, dealing with entitlements, rebuilding defense. Everything doesn’t have to be about me. Some of these things are good just because they’re inherently good and hopefully this will become a focus of what people are gonna have to talk about. Because this is no more fluff this is, this is the real deal. So we’ll see.
Unidentified Speaker: In Ohio you’ve kind of skewed the idea that increased economic growth from tax cuts makes up entirely for those tax cuts. You called for increases in other taxes. This plan does the, does the opposite, it doesn’t increase loopholes or anything like that?
John Kasich: Well, first of all in Ohio we’ve been able to cut taxes because we cut government. We didn’t, we just didn’t raise...
Unidentified Speaker: But there’s also increases though, right? To make up for it.
John Kasich: Yeah, but those, but no, the bulk of the tax cuts are we don’t, we have not received, we have not been able to pass most of the increased of tax reform where I want to go from a consumption based to an investment based economy. We’ve been able to achieve the bulk of these because we’ve reduced government, period. I mean, now we could go lower in Ohio if we can substitute consumption taxes for investment and lower income taxes.
And this plan, look it’s always fair to have a little bit of dynamic growth in your plan because this economy has been so anemic we know that we’re gonna get a boost if we can do all these things. But you got to remember we also are cutting spending in this plan or we’re reducing the growth of spending in this plan. So you get it done two ways, you grow the economy and you reduce your overhead.
Unidentified Speaker: But Governor, some candidates have offered a tax cut plan, some have offered an energy plan, some have offered a budget plan.
John Kasich: I haven’t seen...
Unidentified Speaker: Why don’t you think it necessary that all (inaudible)...
John Kasich: Well, because you don’t do it with a check off the box strategy. And I haven’t seen any budget plan by the way. Because it takes a combination of things to get your economy going. I mean, it’s energy, it’s trade, it’s regulatory, it’s taxes, it’s controlling spending, it’s a whole variety of things that you need to do. And, you know, just one thing after another is just, just not the way I do things. This is a dynamic plan that in fact can be achieved. And I think we’re seeing a lot of voices around the country that are saying look, if there’s anybody that knows how to pass these things it’s Kasich. And I happen to be biased and agree with them.
Unidentified Speaker: We got one more.
Unidentified Speaker: Governor, will your tax plan deal with carried interest at all?
John Kasich: We don’t, we don’t touch carried interest in this tax plan.
Unidentified Speaker: Governor, do you have any reaction to Obama’s announcement that he’s gonna draw down (inaudible)?
John Kasich: I thought he was not drawing them down.
Unidentified Speaker: (Inaudible) draw down before...
John Kasich: Yeah, he’s halted the draw down. Well, that’s because the conditions on the ground have deteriorated but, you know, for me I would have never done the second increase in troop levels. I would have used Special Forces to, to be able to go to be lethal and mobile to take care of the job. I wouldn’t have supported the additional troops, but now that the situation has deteriorated on the ground I think it’s a wise decision to say we’re just not gonna go running out of there and lose all the things that we had invested over the years. So I just don’t know much about what he’s saying, but I to me it, it’s probably a reaction to the 60 Minutes interview where people said he looked weak.
Unidentified Speaker: Thank you.
Nick, last name unknown: Governor, how are you? My name is Nick(sp?) I'm with Results.
John Kasich: Yeah.
Nick, last name unknown: We know our partnership with the global fund saves 100,000 lives. We know it works. Will you...
John Kasich: Well, I don’t, I don’t know that much about it and does it all work and all, and I got to...
Nick, last name unknown: Due respect, Governor, we’ve asked you a lot.
John Kasich: Yeah.
Nick, last name unknown: Do you plan to look into it any closer?
John Kasich: We’ll look at it at some point. We just, you know, we got to balance a budget, too. So we’ll look. I’ve always been a supporter of effective
foreign aid. I don’t, we don’t know all these things. I know there’s a chunk of foreign aid that actually doesn’t get to the people who really need it. So we’ll see, but I'm open to it.
Nick, last name unknown: Thank you.
I'm extremely impressed with your writing skills as neatly as with the format in your blog. Is this a paid topic or did you modify it your self? Anyway stay up the excellent high quality writing, it is uncommon to see a great blog like this one today..