Oct. 14– BOW — Ohio Gov. John Kasich intends to unveil his blueprint for restoring the country’s vitality and economic growth Thursday at Nashua Community College.
He declined to reveal specifics at a town meeting Tuesday at Bow Old Town Hall attended by about 100 people, but he did say he would eliminate one federal department and replace 100 separate elementary and secondary education programs with three block grants to the states.
“You (would be) in charge,” Kasich said. “You would run education in New Hampshire from Bow, not Washington.”
And he said he would not fill federal jobs when current employees retire, and pushed for bipartisan cooperation to deal with such problems as Social Security and upgrading the military.
But when he was questioned about compromising on conservative values, Kasich said no one gets everything they want as life is full of compromises.
“You can’t be a stubborn ideologue, and say ‘My way or the highway,'” he said.
Kasich said his blueprint to move the country forward includes balancing the federal budget and addressing the national debt, shifting power and money from Washington to the states, doing away with needless regulations, includes a comprehensive energy plan and a tax policy to spur economic growth.
“My plan will create economic growth, control spending and restore the economic vitality of the country,” Kasich said. “It’ll be the framework for the first 100 days of a Kasich administration.”
He skirted around his controversial remark last week on Social Security telling a woman she would get used to having lower benefits, but noted he would appoint someone like Bow resident and former U.S. Rep. Dick Sweat, a Democrat who attended the meeting but who is backing former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for President, to a commission to solve the problem.
“We have to fix Social Security,” Kasich said, and noted changes could be made to the retirement age, early retirement, or limiting benefits to contributions, calling them technical fixes.
“If you try to shove a Republican plan through,” he said, “that’s not going to work.”
Kasich had kind words for Sweat, who served with him on the House Budget Committee, saying they tried to produce a budget that trimmed one cent out of every dollar from the federal budget.
Sweat said after the meeting Kasich’s plan to get one penny out of every dollar spent has to succeed or the country will go bankrupt.
“He worked with me — a Democrat,” Sweat said. “You heard him, he still intends to do that.”
Kasich also praised another former representative and senator, John E. Sununu, who served on the same committee.
Sununu, who is Kasich’s New Hampshire campaign chairman, introduced him and praised his work in Congress and in Ohio where Sununu said he turned a $6 million deficit into a $2 billion surplus, “piece by piece” and now Ohio’s economy is thriving.
“That’s a record of achievement,” Sununu said.
Retired Air Traffic Controller Renee Paradis of Laconia suggested greater efficiencies could be achieved by eliminating some federal employees who do not do their jobs.
After the meeting, she said Tuesday was her first time seeing Kasich but has attended other events with Carly Fiorina, Chris Christie,Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush.
“I’m going to see as many as I can before I start leaning,” Paradis said. “That’s the great thing about living here in New Hampshire.”
Bob Wolfe of Concord already decided to support Kasich before he attended the Bow meeting, which was his first time seeing the candidate.
He gave a list of reasons for supporting Kasich, from his age to knowing other world leaders to knowing banking laws and having a familiarity with the military.
“And he’s from Ohio,” Wolfe said, “which we have to have.”
No Republican in recent years has won the presidency without winning Ohio.
Kasich appeared later Tuesday at the Tilt’n Diner and then held another town meeting in Littleton.
(c)2015 The New Hampshire Union Leader (Manchester, N.H.)
Visit The New Hampshire Union Leader (Manchester, N.H.) at www.unionleader.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.