John Kasich on President Obama's $800 Billion Mistake

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This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," October 14, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: All right, so the truth is finally getting out. $800 billion later, President Obama is finally admitting that the cornerstone of his stimulus sales pitch was a farce.

Now remember when the Anointed One promised that the Recovery Act would instantly inject money into the U.S. economy? And remember when he said it would immediately put Americans back to work thanks to shovel-ready projects all across the country? Well, that's no longer the case.

In an interview with The New York Times he now acknowledges, quote, "There's no such thing as shovel-ready projects."

No such thing? What exactly did he mean when he said this?


PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: I think we can get a lot of work done fast. When I met with the governors, all of them have projects that are shovel ready.

OBAMA: We've got shovel-ready projects all across the country.

OBAMA: Shovel-ready projects, rebuilding our roads, our bridges.

OBAMA: We are seeing shovels hit the ground.

OBAMA: Shovels are breaking ground.

OBAMA: There are almost 100 shovel-ready transportation projects already approved in Colorado which are beginning to create jobs.


HANNITY: So I guess this is just more proof that he's willing to say anything in order to advance his radical agenda.

And back with us tonight, with his reaction to all this is Republican gubernatorial candidate from the great state of Ohio, former Congressman John Kasich is back.

Congressman, good to have you back. Thanks for being with us.


HANNITY: The polls have you up. But I've been reading and seeing that there is more money going against you. How many times has the president and vice president been in Ohio to campaign against you?

KASICH: Well, Barack Obama will be here 11 times on Sunday night, Sean.


KASICH: And -- 11 times. And Joe Biden has been here -- you know, he's been four times in the last three weeks. There's been more money spent against me than any candidate in America.

And the reason is Obama is running for reelection, because he knows if he loses Ohio he's in trouble. And all I'm doing is running for governor. He's going to appear with his twin here, Ted Strickland. And, you know, I mean, it just gives people an opportunity in this race to vote against more taxes, more stimulus, to be in a position to vote against Obamacare. Try to get this economy straightened out.

So it is a very central race. And, 11 times, Sean, they're coming after Johnny Kasich for 11 times he's going to be here. It's amazing.


KASICH: People can come on our website at Sunday night at 6:30. We're going to talk about the damage the Obama agenda has done to us. And if you have extra nickels or dimes please send it our way.

HANNITY: Well, I --


HANNITY: I want to put this -- put some emphasis on this because this is really important. Explain to people why -- we cannot afford to lose that race?

KASICH: Well, no Republican has ever been elected president without winning Ohio. Ohio is ground zero. The eyes of the country is on this race. We've had people come from Europe to take a look at this race. The BBC apparently reporting. The Economist has been here.

Look, this is it, Sean. This is where his -- this is firewall to be reelected in 2012. And so he's here trying to rev up his base. I've had, you know, all -- the liberal organizations have been involved in here. All the big labor PACs, from the SEIU to the teachers union. They've all been in here because they're afraid of change, of getting back to conservative approach. And they're afraid that Obama will lose this election if he doesn't win Ohio.


KASICH: That's why he's running now. This is his chance to try to get reelected for '12 and test out a message and elect his twin Ted Strickland.

HANNITY: No, I agree with your analysis. And I think we all know how key Ohio is for any Republican to be elected president, I think you're absolutely right. It is interesting that this is about him thinking about 2012.

Now he gave this interview to The New York Times. Now he's saying, there's -- you know there's no such thing as a shovel-ready project. That's not how he sold the stimulus, as we just showed everybody, to the American people. It was a farce.


KASICH: Well, Sean -- yes.

HANNITY: It seems like he's willing to say anything. We face catastrophe. Unemployment won't go above 8 percent.

Is this the final nail in the coffin in terms of the believability of Barack Obama for the American people?

KASICH: Well, I think this race is a big deal. I can promise you, Sean, both in your network and across the television networks on election night, this race will be front and center.

Because, look, with the stimulus package the reason there are no shovel-ready projects, the reason he's saying what he's saying is he's trying to dismiss a little of the anger. He's trying to let some of the pressure out of the pressure cooker. Because people are really, really fed up.

And the reason why he's coming here is to try to gin up the base, to get his people out. And that's why, you know, 11 visits, raise money, get the people going and be able to defend this program.

But I believe his interview with The New York Times is because he knows that if he doesn't start saying some things to reduce the anger he's going to get swamped in a couple of weeks here.

HANNITY: I think you're right.

Why is it in the race for the Senate it seems like they left Bob Portman alone in that race. You know, because obviously I would think they want to get the Senate back as well but they seem very fixated and focused on you. I was wondering if it had to do with the fact when -- look, when you were running the budget and you insisted on a balanced budget and Congressional Budget Office numbers and no gimmicks in terms of accounting, you helped -- along with Pete Domenici -- forced Clinton into signing that bill that actually got us on a path to a balanced budget.

Are they threatened by your record and your background?

KASICH: Well, I think they are concerned about what I'll do out here being a reformer, you know, being somebody that wants to return to government as a last resort not as a first resort.

But there is something more central here, Sean. Look, the Senate matters, the House matters, but they are really focused on governors races because it's governors that control the tempo inside of a state. It's governors that decide, you know, to a large degree what happens in terms of redistricting.

They are very, very concerned about this. And in fact my opponent said look, you know, if you don't reelect me you really hurt Barack Obama's chances for reelection. You see it's the governors that are the people that really manage a state.

Now my business is, I want to get -- I want to get elected. I want to improve Ohio. I want to create jobs, Sean. And at the end of the day if that's -- if that works out the way I know it will, it won't bode well for somebody who thinks really 180 different than I do.

HANNITY: All right, John Kasich, we will be watching along with the rest of the country this race very closely. Thanks for being with us. And --

KASICH: And we --


KASICH: We need your help. If you like conservatism and John Kasich, we need your help.

HANNITY: All right, John Kasich, thanks for being with us.

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