Kasich Hobnobs in Georgia with Donors & GOP Extremists

May 26, 2015

For Immediate Release:

Tuesday, May 26, 2015




COLUMBUS – The Ohio Democratic Party and Georgia Democratic Party today released the following joint statement on Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s visit to the Peach State:


“As Ohio’s second-largest city struggles with unrest, Governor Kasich is 700 miles away, wining and dining with Republican big-wigs and donors,” said Ohio Democratic Party Chairman David Pepper. “It’s becoming clear that Kasich’s number-one priority is serving his presidential ambitions, not working for the people of Ohio.”


“John Kasich’s record in Ohio reflects the same failures as those of Georgia Governor Nathan Deal — placing huge burdens on cities and local governments by slashing state funding, devastating cuts to public schools, and doling out tax cuts to top earners while middle-class families suffer,” said Georgia Democratic Party Chairman DuBose Porter. “We’ve seen what Kasich has done to Ohio, and the damage done by our own governor here at home. Georgians need to send a Democrat to the White House — we need a president who has our backs.”


Attendees at Kasich’s Sandy Springs event included GOP strategist Ralph Reed, former candidate for governor Karen Handel and Secretary of State Brian Kemp. Kasich is eyeing a 2016 presidential run, but his anemic national poll numbers mean he is unlikely to qualify for the RNC’s first debate — which will be held in August in Cleveland.


According to one Republican operative, “It would just be flat-out embarrassing if he didn’t meet the top 10 threshold in his home state.”


“Kasich wants people to believe he is some kind of moderate, but he’s courting extremists like Ralph Reed, who compared President Obama’s policies to Nazi Germany and suggested that those who are fighting against marriage equality are akin to those who fought slavery,” said Pepper. “He’s drawing support from folks like Karen Handel, who tried to slash funding for cancer screenings to Planned Parenthood because of her extremist beliefs. Birds of a feather flock together, and Kasich’s flock represents a divisive, radical agenda.”


HEADLINE: “Ralph Reed’s Group Compares Obama Policies to Nazi Germany.” [Mother Jones, 9/25/12]

Ralph Reed’s Faith And Freedom Coalition Mailed out “Voter Registration Confirmation Survey[s]” That Compared President Obama’s Policies To Nazi Germany And Said President Obama Has “Communist Beliefs.” “A mailer blasted out by the Faith and Freedom Coalition, a nonprofit group spending millions of dollars to mobilize evangelical voters this November to help Mitt Romney’s campaign, compares President Barack Obama’s policies to the threat posed by Nazi Germany and Japan during World War II. It also says that Obama has ‘Communist beliefs.’ A copy of this so-called ‘Voter Registration Confirmation Survey’ was obtained by Mother Jones after it was sent to the home of a registered Republican voter. The Faith and Freedom Coalition is the brainchild of Ralph Reed, the former head of the Christian Coalition who was once hailed as ‘the right hand of God’ and who is now tasked with getting out the evangelical vote for Romney.” [Mother Jones, 9/25/12]

HEADLINE: Ralph Reed: “Those Who Oppose Same-Sex Marriage Can Draw From Lessons From Fight Against Slavery.” [Yahoo News, 6/21/14]

Ralph Reed Gave A Speech Suggesting That The Dred Scott SCOTUS Decision Held A Lesson For Conservative Activists That Are Concerned With Judicial Overreach. “Speaking to about 40 attendees at an afternoon breakout session during the organization’s annual ‘Road to Majority’ conference in Washington, D.C. on Friday, Reed gave a speech in which he suggested the 1857 Dred Scott Supreme Court decision —which ruled that African American slaves remained the property of their owners even if they traveled to or resided in free states — held a lesson for contemporary conservative activists concerned about what they see as judicial overreach on the issue of gay marriage. Before the abolitionists triumphed, Reed reminded, it appeared for many years that the courts would squash the hopes of human rights reformers. ‘The battle looked like it was lost, but it really wasn’t,’ Reed said of the immediate aftermath of the Dred Scott decision, which went on to embolden abolitionist activists. ‘And that’s kind of like where we are right now. Anybody heard lately that we’re losing the marriage issue? Anybody heard that argument? You notice some similarities? I’m not comparing slavery to same-sex marriage, OK? I’m just pointing out that when you have these fights, what’s interesting is that if you look at same-sex marriage, it’s now legal in 17 states.’” [Yahoo News, 6/21/14]

HEADLINE: “BREAKING: Anti-Choice Komen VP Karen Handel Resigns, Admits Role In Planned Parenthood Decision.”  [Think Progress, 2/7/12]

Karen Handel, Susan G. Komen For The Cure’s Senior Vice President Of Public Policy, Resigned In Protest Of The Organization’s Decision To Consider Reinstating Funding For Cancer Screenings At Planned Parenthood Health Centers. “Today, Karen Handel, Susan G. Komen for the Cure’s controversial Senior Vice President of Public Policy, resigned in protest of the organization’s decision to consider reinstating funding for cancer screenings at Planned Parenthood health centers. Handel has been at the center of the firestorm surrounding the organization’s unpopular decision to sever ties with Planned Parenthood — a decision that was reversed just a few days later following a massive backlash from supporters and its own employees.In her resignation letter, Handel openly acknowledges her integral role in formulating the policy designed to cut off Planned Parenthood funding. Just a few days ago, Komen founder and president Nancy Brinker claimed, ‘Let me just tell you for the record that Karen did not have anything to do with this decision.’” [Think Progress, 2/7/12]

Karen Handel Drove The Susan G. Komen For The Cure’s Creation Of A Rule That Would Cut Funding To Planned Parenthood. “But three sources with direct knowledge of the Komen decision-making process told me that the rule was adopted in order to create an excuse to cut off Planned Parenthood. (Komen gives out grants to roughly 2,000 organizations, and the new ‘no investigations’ rule applies to only one so far.) The decision to create a rule that would cut funding to Planned Parenthood, according to these sources, was driven by the organization’s new senior vice president for public policy, Karen Handel, a former gubernatorial candidate from Georgia who is staunchly anti-abortion and who has said that since she is ‘pro-life, I do not support the mission of Planned Parenthood.’ (The Komen grants to Planned Parenthood did not pay for abortion or contraception services, only cancer detection, according to all parties involved.) I’ve tried to reach Handel for comment, and will update this post if I speak with her.” [The Atlantic, 2/2/12]



Other News from DPG

Questions? Tips? Call anytime.

Georgia Voter Protection Line


Democratic Party of Georgia

Help us elect Democrats in Georgia.