Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a possible contender for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, advocates reshaping the GOP by invoking Ronald Reagan's name. He wants the party to champion a brand of fiscal conservatism that beyond balancing the budget is about allocating available resources to help underprivileged Americans, according to CNN.
Kasich's decision to expand Medicaid by accepting federal money in Ohio and his readiness to consider a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants has made him a target of criticism from some conservatives.
"Who are these people who are defining what it means to be a conservative?" said Kasich. He has put greater socio-economic mobility at the forefront of his campaign.
"I don't like the term, particularly, 'compassionate conservative,' because that implies that we just give people something and that's the end of it," Kasich told CNN. "Our idea is you help them so that they can get in a position where they can help themselves and break whatever cycle they may be a part of."
He is traveling around the country advocating a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution while touting his accomplishments as governor.
noted that he won big in his 2014 re-election bid with a 31-point victory margin, garnered 26 percent of the African-American vote, 60 percent of women, and 56 percent of voters under age 30, according to U.S. News.
"I want people to hear what I think about these foundational American values of personal responsibility, resilience, family and faith," he said. "There are things that people can learn from somebody who leads a state like Ohio which is, frankly, a microcosm of the country," Kasich told CNN.
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