Former Ohio governor John Kasich has hinted he might be willing to challenge President Trump in the Republican primary, telling CNN “all of my options remain on the table.”
Kasich, if you recall, was the last of the Republican candidates to concede defeat in 2016, despite only winning one primary in his own state and finishing fourth behind Trump, Senator Ted Cruz, and Senator Marco Rubio for total delegates.
The moderately liberal politician joined CNN as a senior political commentator in January, fueling speculation that he was looking to run for president again in 2020.
During an interview Wednesday morning, Kasich admitted that nothing has been ruled out.
“I don’t wake up every day looking at polls or thinking about me and my political future. I just want to be a good voice,” after noting that all options are open.
— CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) April 17, 2019
Can He Win?
Should Kasich jump into the ring, he’d join Bill Weld, the former Republican governor of Massachusetts, who encouraged both he and Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan to join him.
Former Florida governor Jeb Bush also expressed hopes that “someone” would step forward and challenge Trump in the upcoming Republican Primary.
Hater, Never-Trumper Bill Kristol leads the charge to find Republican challenger vs Trump2020. He’s found former Mass Gov Bill Weld…a nobody.
Kristol is the same stooge who brought us Evan McMullin…🤪https://t.co/oVIJA8ILG2
— Myrna 🇺🇸 #KAG2020 (@inthecopa) April 17, 2019
But can he, or any of these other contenders, actually win?
Nearly every scenario conceivable in 2020, as identified by RealClearPolitics, indicates Trump blowing away any competition by wide margins. Specifically, a Hill.TV American Barometer survey indicated the President would beat Kasich by 53 points.
A recent Gallup poll shows the president with an astounding 89 percent job approval rating among Republican voters, making any primary challenge a difficult one no matter the candidate.
Kasich seems to hint in the above CNN interview that challenging Trump from within the Republican party may be an insurmountable hill to climb.
Would he fare better running as an Independent?
Reports surfaced in 2017 suggesting Kasich was considering running on an Independent ticket with then-governor of Colorado John Hickenlooper.
The pair were seeking “to frame themselves as a centrist alternative to President Trump and the increasingly militant left.”
Alternative to Trump
We’re not sure pitching yourself as the anti-Trump is going to score points with the Republican party. Anti-Trump = Straight-up Democrat, after all.
Which is, essentially, how he’s been acting for quite some time now.
“Our country needs real leadership to solve our problems,” Kasich said in January, in the midst of a fight over the border wall. “Right now it doesn’t look like that leadership exists in Washington, DC.”
He’s even joined in on some Russian collusion smack against the President …
— John Kasich (@JohnKasich) August 13, 2018
This is, of course, the same man who once cited the Bible as a reason to expand Obamacare in his home state. He’s not only been anti-Trump, but he’s been decidedly anti-conservative for quite some time.
Which gives him no chance of defeating Trump in 2020.