Tags: Trump | Ohio | Kasich

Trump Steps Into Ohio Race to 'Swat' Gov. Kasich

Image: Trump Steps Into Ohio Race to 'Swat' Gov. Kasich

(AP)

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Monday, 09 Jan 2017 11:43 AM Current | Bio | Archive

Two days after Donald Trump worked the phones to successfully unseat Ohio’s Republican Chairman Matt Borges, a close ally of Gov. John Kasich told Newsmax that the purpose of the president-elect’s unprecedented involvement in the state party contest was “to take a swat at John Kasich and nothing more.”

In an exclusive interview with Newsmax following the vote for state chairman Friday night, Franklin County (Columbus) Chairman Doug Preisse recollected that “few former opponents or critics [of Trump] were consistent or as highly placed as John Kasich.”

He was referring to the Buckeye State governor, one of the last Republican presidential hopefuls left standing as Trump was wrapping up the nomination. Kasich subsequently refused to endorse him in the fall election or even attend their party’s national convention in his home state.

That, of course, had no impact on the votes of Ohioans in November. Trump swept the state’s electoral votes with more than 55 percent of the popular vote.

Moreover, Borges, who became state chairman four years ago with the help of Kasich’s political team, stuck with Trump and worked for the entire GOP ticket (which include Sen. Rob Portman, who won re-election in a landslide).

But, according to Preisse, that was “trumped” by Borges’ association with Kasich in Trump’s eyes. The president-elect endorsed state committeewoman and longtime supporter Jane Murphy Timken. Bob Paduchik, Trump’s chief Ohio lieutenant, worked for her election.

As 65 of the 66 state committee members arrived at the Nationwide Insurance Building in Delaware County for the big vote Friday night, Trump was personally telephoning members to drum up support for Timken.

“And not even the president-elect making calls could get the job done for Jane,” Preisse told us, noting that on two ballots, the vote was deadlocked with Timken at 33 and Borges 32. (Under state party rules, a candidate for a party office has to secure a majority of committee members — 34 — to win).

After two ballots, Paduchik and Preisse sat down in a closed conference room with Timken and Borges. The incumbent, according to Preisse, “could have fought on for several more ballots but decided, in the interests of the party, he would defer to Jane.”

Trump tweeted the outcome as a victory for his friend Timken. Preisse and “Team Kasich,” of course, viewed it differently. But they also are clearly moving on.

“We have had many decades of proven success in Ohio,” Preisse told us, “From State Chairman Ray Bliss in the 1960s to [the late State Chairman] Bob Bennett in the ’90s to current leaders such as [Summit County GOP leader] Alex Arshinkoff and Matt Borges, we have developed more assets than deficits. And that is heartening to all.”

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax.

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 
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A close ally of Gov. John Kasich told Newsmax that the purpose of Trump’s unprecedented involvement in the state party contest was “to take a swat at John Kasich."
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2017-43-09
Monday, 09 Jan 2017 11:43 AM
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