John Kasich (Ohio). Michigan isn’t the only Rust Belt state that needs to revamp its tax system and curb its public-sector unions. In the Tax Foundation’s 2011 State Business Tax Climate Index, Ohio places a dismal 46th. A separate analysis shows that Ohio went from having the sixth-lowest combined state and local tax burden in 1977 to having the seventh-highest burden in 2008. (And for most of that period, there was a Republican governor in Columbus.) “The tax burden is the single most important obstacle to economic growth that the state government can deal with,” says Ohio University economist Richard Vedder.
Governor-elect John Kasich has signed Grover Norquist’s Taxpayer Protection Pledge (thereby vowing not to support tax hikes), as has incoming Ohio house speaker Bill Batchelder. Both are rock-ribbed conservatives. Kasich, 58, first gained national recognition during his tenure as House Budget Committee chief during the Clinton years, and he later worked as a Fox News host. Addressing a luncheon of lobbyists and special-interest bigwigs just days after his election, he delivered a stern warning: “We need you on the bus, and if you’re not on the bus, we will run over you with the bus. And I’m not kidding.”
However, John faces a serious obstacle in the RINO controlled State Senate, where we know Senate President Niehaus is no stranger to raising taxes, even retroactively:
But the new governor will face huge resistance from Big Labor, and perhaps also some pushback from the GOP-controlled state senate, which will be, on balance, less conservative than Kasich and Batchelder. (“This is the national headquarters of RINO Republicanism,” jokes Vedder.)
Gee, wonder how Kevin DeWine feels about that comment by Vedder? Shoot, he probably embraces it. Shame.
The others include Michigan's Rick Snyder, Wisconsin's Scott Walker, and Paul LePage of Maine.