Ohio Governor John Kasich remains a popular figure in his home state. In fact, in the months leading up to the state-wide primary, the governor was scoring his highest ever approval ratings from his constituents, hitting 62% in October 2015. Despite not winning the Republican party nomination, it was the Buckeye State that provided the Governor his only win in those primaries, so it’s no surprise that the people of Ohio were quick to defend Kasich against criticism Monday morning.
Kasich is one of the many Republicans who will not be appearing this week at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, a point that Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort took issue with during an interview on Morning Joe.
“[Kasich]’s making a big mistake! He’s making a big mistake… he’s hurting his state,” offered Manafort to hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski about the fact that the Ohio governor won’t appear to support the party nominee. “He’s embarrassing his state, frankly.”
That last comment was met with a sea of boos inside Flannery’s Irish Pub from the Cleveland faithful.
“Most of the Republicans who aren’t coming are people who have been part of the past. And people who are a part of the future of the Republican party are frankly going to be here and participating in the program,” he continued.
As always, Manafort highlighted that the emphasis of the Convention wouldn’t be to try and change the presumptive nominee, or have him pivot in any sudden directions. Rather, it’s about, “…trying to expand the focus of who he is.”
Watch the above exchange from MSNBC’s Morning Joe.
UPDATE — 9:40 a.m. ET: So much for party unity.
The Chairman of the Ohio GOP Matt Borges took to Twitter to fire back at Manafort shortly ago:
Manafort still has a lot to learn about Ohio politics. Doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Hope he can do better. https://t.co/3i6gBg2ZXD
— Matt Borges (@ChairmanBorges) July 18, 2016
[image via screengrab]
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