MI First Election
At an event held at Michigan State University, John Kasich, Republican presidential candidate, put a clear focus on the positive way he runs his campaign.
“This country is so invested in negative campaigning. You know what? If a positive campaign can’t work? I’ll just go back to Ohio,” said Kasich, when asked how he tries to differentiate himself and his campaign from the other Republicans. “I am who I am.”
Congressman Pete Hoekstra said in his opening statement for Kasich, “John led, and John led in a positive way.”
Appealing to the youth in the audience, Kasich returned numerous times to the idea that his audience was his priority because they were the future of the country. Fired up, Kasich paced the stage, making eye contact with as many audience members as he could, as he said, “The spirit of our country gets rekindled by you.”
“I like that (Kasich)’s a positive guy and he wants positive action, positive conservative action,” said Nick Reynolds, a political theory and constitutional democracy junior at MSU. “I feel that while the other candidates divide, I feel he unites and can unite through positive actions and ideas to jumpstart the economy and to help everybody rise up.”
In his introductory speech, he talked about the determination needed to succeed and not taking “No” for an answer. “Never ever let somebody tell you what it is you cannot do,” Kasich said. He suggested the No. 1 problem for youths was overcoming their lack of experience and convincing people to take a chance on them.
MSU social relations and policy major Dan Eggerding pressed Kasich on the issue of LGBT rights and eventually got a response of “We’re not changing any laws. Let’s move on,” from Kasich.
Kasich mentioned his poor background, as he talked about giving the power of the government back to the people.
“What I’m really bothered about: I don’t like billionaires deciding who’s president,” said Kasich, whose No. 1 donor is multi-billion dollar company MBNA Corp.
Aaron Stephens, a sophomore in pre-law, said after the event, “Every question (Kasich) answered was ‘I believe in these things, but I’m not gonna do anything.’”