Gov. Kasich: We need to end uncertainty with businesses

This is a rush transcript from "Your World," May 16, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.


JOE BIDEN, U.S. VICE-PRESIDENT: As you have begun to see in the valley, things really are starting to come back.


BIDEN: There are signs of life and hope in the heartland.



NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF “YOUR WORLD”: Well, is it time for Joe to go slow? Vice President Joe Biden in the Buckeye State talking up the president’s policies as unemployment in Ohio going down, and a lot.

But who is really to thank for that? In the past year-and-a-half, Ohio’s jobless rate has slipped from 9 percent to around 7.5 percent.

And guess who is governor? Well, this guy. He’s a Republican.

Governor John Kasich joining me right now.


CAVUTO: Governor, you and I have chatted about this before.

It’s always good to have you, by the way.


CAVUTO: And I know you said, look, if the president benefits, so be it. I want the people in Ohio to benefit. That matters more.

But does it bother you on that level that the administration is taking credit for what you are doing?

KASICH: No, Neil, it doesn’t bother me, but I will point out a couple things.

First of all, we were near death before we -- here in the state of Ohio before we fixed things here. We had an $8 billion hole. We balanced our budget. We cut taxes. We’ve streamlined our regulation. We have privatized our development operation. And we are now the number one job creator in the Midwest. We were 48 in the country and we’re number five in the country.

So, look, we are outperforming all these other states in our region and it’s fantastic. We have a long way to go. Our unemployment is still too high, but, look, what we have done is provide certainty to companies so they can feel safe in coming to Ohio. And we’ve created diversity.

I mean, the single biggest the growth sector -- and these numbers change all time, but the single biggest one is financial services, and then health. We have created 1,400 direct auto manufacturing jobs, but we’ve created a net of almost 73,000 jobs.

So we’ve diversified. We’re safe. I talk to CEOs all the time and I pitched the fact that when the rest of the world is having their credit downgraded, Ohio -- including America -- Ohio has had its credit improved.

CAVUTO: All right, but I will be crassly political, if you don’t mind, Governor, and say...


CAVUTO: ... won’t that be a kick in the heinie if it’s the president, because of the improvement in your bellwether, crucial, "Republican got to win" state, ends up winning it and getting reelected because of you?

KASICH: Neil, Neil, here’s the thing.

My job is to try and get people to work. It helps the families. It gets kids out of poverty. I mean, I have no regrets of the fact that we are doing better. And I don’t think about it. I honestly don’t.


KASICH: And the fact is, I’ve got to do my job, Neil, and I’ve been in politics before, and I’m in it again. And you start worrying about all these results or who gets credit, and I think you just have lost your way.

CAVUTO: No, you are a gentleman about it, and I am not, so I will indulge one point here, that if...

KASICH: Well, I can tell you this. The president’s policies in Washington have hurt us out here, frankly.


CAVUTO: Well, that was going to be my next question, that that -- is it -- for Joe Biden to come and say, look, because of us...

KASICH: He shouldn’t say that.

CAVUTO: ... we’re seeing this, what do you say?

KASICH: Well, Joe told me he was a good golfer, too, and I played with him. So...


KASICH: No, the fact of the matter is, Neil, that what’s causing us not to grow as fast as we should in Ohio is uncertainty. It’s ObamaCare because companies don’t know what the cost -- it is the unwillingness to invest because they say they want to tax people who are successful.

It’s over-regulation. They forced the shutting down of a number of our coal plants out here. And, look, it’s a lot of things that have created uncertainty in the minds of job creators. If we were to remove that uncertainty, Ohio would grow much faster.

My greatest worry is Washington screwing this whole thing up. I am worried about Europe, but I am also worried about Washington, that can’t get its act together. And the president doesn’t seem to have a very good economic program at all. He doesn’t understand investment. I don’t think he understands risk taking, and the proof is in the pudding, so we are kind of carving our own way out here, Neil, and it is working for us.

And, by the way, our Ohio Senate yesterday just passed a comprehensive energy policy that Washington can’t get done, but we’re getting done out here in Ohio.

CAVUTO: Well, kudos to you

I do want to talk about your colleague and friend Chris Christie in New Jersey, revenues coming in a little less than he thought last month. Democrats have seized on that as a sign that maybe this New Jersey miracle is not happening and that tax cuts are not the way to go, and that the governor’s own plan to cut them additionally isn’t the way to go. So, they are jumping on him.

What do you think of that?

KASICH: Neil, all we did in Ohio for many years as we approached near-death experience was to raise taxes and raise spending.

Look, I talk to the job creators, the CEOs. I talk to them all the time. And you know what they say? They say how can you help us to lower our costs? They don’t call me up and say, can you raise my costs? The reason why they are coming to Ohio is we’ve made it better, and all for small businesses.

I was at a microbrewery last week and I said to a lady there how would you like to have an income tax cut? It took her breath away. I had to hold her up. I thought she was going to pass out. She said how’s that possible?

You know, if you cut taxes, you are helping small business. And small business is the engine of economic growth. And this business that we should raise taxes and raise spending, what are they talking about, Neil? This doesn’t work.


CAVUTO: I’ll put down as disagree.

Meanwhile, your friend Scott Walker in Wisconsin up in a recall election, he leads in some polls by as much as nine points. If he comes out of this OK and wins by the margins some suspect he might, what do you think this is going to mean for Democrats?

KASICH: Well, I think Scott Walker’s worked very hard in all this, and the bottom line is, is that it has now turned into like a typical political race. And it looks pretty good for Scott Walker, and it means a lot for Scott because he has shown a lot of courage up there. And a win for him is significant and a loss of those that rallied against him is significant.

We will see how it turns out, Neil. It is very fluid. We’ll see where it goes. But Scott has shown a lot of courage.

CAVUTO: Your old colleague John Boehner and your friend, the House speaker, seems to be hinting of a possible government shutdown, or drawing this to the brink on the debt limit ceiling, if he doesn’t get a commensurate or equal number of cuts to go with whatever they raise that ceiling by. So we might relive what we went through last summer. Good? Bad? What?


KASICH: Well, look, you’re not going to get any of this big stuff done. It’s a tragedy because as they ring up the debt, it weakens the United States. Ultimately, our children are going to have to pay.

I mean, realistically, if Boehner can shoot a three from half-court and score, I’m all for him. But I anticipate a run towards this election and a debate about who has the right policies to grow jobs and grow the economy. It might be good for ratings for you, though, Neil, because you were on like every day every hour. I was impressed.

CAVUTO: I remember that.

But would you -- would you draw -- push the nation to the brink again to make a point?


KASICH: I’m not -- look, I’m not there, Neil, but I will tell you this in Ohio.

When people, in either party, decide they want to spend our surplus, and, by the way, we had 89 cents in a rainy day fund, we now have at least a quarter of a billion -- when they start talking about spending money, there’s some legitimate emergencies that we have to deal with, but when they start talking about spending money, guess what?

I have got this thing. It’s called a veto, and I intend to use it. So let me take care of my business and let them take care of it down there. I just remind you, when I was down there, before I left, working with my colleagues, we actually had a balanced budget.

CAVUTO: Indeed, you did, smartest House budget chief we ever had.


CAVUTO: All right, thank you, sir. Always good seeing you, Governor. Be well.

KASICH: Always great to be with you, Neil. Thanks.

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