John Kasich on Tax Reform

Republican Governor; previously Representative (OH-12); 2000 & 2016 candidate for President


Reduce tax withholding by 3.1%

Kasich announced he was looking at a possibility of reducing the tax withholding tables that determine how much money is taken out of employee's paychecks to cover their tax burdens. Kasich wants to reduce the withholding table by 3.1% which would bring it in line with the planned reduction of 6.3% from a few years ago that was not fully implemented by the state legislature.

Ultimately, reducing the withholding table means that less of an employee's money is taken out of their paycheck and set aside to cover their income tax liability. Technically that gives the employee more money to spend and increases their spending power, but is not likely to be a significant amount. The idea is to be even at the end of the year; not owe a bunch, not get a bunch back.

So why bother? Because the State can. Several years ago, the state legislature chose to only reduce the table by half the planned amount out of concerns over the cost to do so. It would cost around $150 million to make this adjustment.

Source: NBC4 WCMH TV Columbus on 2020 presidential hopefuls , Aug 13, 2018

My plan is no fantasy; I moved Ohio from $8B to $2B surplus

Q [to Ben Carson]: Your 15% flat tax plan leaves you with a $1.1 trillion hole.

CARSON: You also have to get rid of all the deductions and all the loopholes. You also have to do some strategic cutting in several places. Remember, we have 645 federal agencies and subagencies. Anybody who tells me that we need every penny in every one of those is in a fantasy world.

Gov. KASICH: We're going to have a 10% tithe, and just fix everything with waste, fraud, and abuse? Folks, we've got to wake up! These plans would put us trillions of dollars in debt. I actually have a plan. Why don't we just give a chicken in every pot while we're coming up with these fantasy tax gains? You have to deal with entitlements. You have to control discretionary spending. I went into Ohio where we had an $8 billion hole, and now we have a $2 billion surplus. We are up 347,000 jobs. In Washington, I fought to get the budget balanced. I was the architect. We cut taxes, and we have a $5 trillion projected surplus when I left.

Source: GOP `Your Money/Your Vote` 2015 CNBC 1st-tier debate , Oct 28, 2015

No taxes on small business; kill the death tax

In our state, we went from a loss of 350,000 jobs to now a gain of 347,000 jobs to the positive. Our wages are growing faster than the national average, and I've cut taxes more than any sitting governor in this state, 5 billion dollars, including no taxes on small business and killing the death tax.
Source: GOP "Your Money/Your Vote" 2015 CNBC 1st-tier debate , Oct 28, 2015

Eliminated the Ohio estate tax but hiked cigarette taxes

Kasich remains the deeply conservative politician he has always been: the government-slashing deficit obsessive who drove Democrats bonkers as chairman of the House Budget Committee in the 1990s. As Ohio's chief executive, Kasich has eliminated the estate tax, cut income-tax rates, tightened food-stamp requirements, cut school funding, and championed business deregulation.

In so many ways, then, Kasich is the stuff of conservative dreams. But the governor is also prone to jabbing his finger in the eye of his base with moves like raising infrastructure spending, increasing tax breaks for low-income residents, championing a fracking tax on oil and gas producers, pushing to hike cigarette taxes, making education funding more redistributive, or commuting death sentences. And of course there's the granddaddy of betrayals: Medicaid expansion, which Kasich rammed through over opposition from Ohio's Republican-controlled Legislature.

Source: National Journal 2015 coverage of 2016 presidential hopefuls , Mar 7, 2015

$3 billion in tax cuts for job creators

We've gone from very high taxes across the board to the largest tax cuts in America, including tax cuts for the working poor, which is a very important part of our philosophy. We're seeing wages grow faster than the national average, and the unemployment rate has dropped to the lowest level in more than a decade.

[My budget represents] the ideas that are producing the economic growth which is making so many of the other good things possible. These accomplishments are sending a message to job creators around the state, around the country, and around the globe that Ohio is open for business. When I tell them that we were $8 billion in the hole and now we're $2 billion in the black, that we've got $3 billion worth of tax cuts, that we've got a private sector entity that can respond to them quickly--it's hard for them to believe. But we've been able to keep growth in check so that there's money to give back to Ohioans in the form of a $500 million tax cut because we have restrained ourselves.

Source: State of the State address to 2015 Ohio Legislature , Feb 24, 2015

Lower taxes to create competitive climate

While Ohio's problems are daunting, I believe they are fixable--but only by creating a business environment that rewards investment & increases wages. With forward-thinking, solutions-oriented leadership, we can transform Ohio into a model of job creatio and economic vitality that other states will want to follow.

To succeed we must lower taxes--Create a tax climate that allows Ohio to compete with other states to attract new businesses, foster job creation, and keep our precious, existing jobs here

Source: 2010 Gubernatorial campaign website, kasichforohio.com , Nov 2, 2010

1970s: In Ohio Senate, unwilling to raise taxes

In the 1970s in the Ohio Senate, when my own party decided to raise taxes, I wrote my own budget that addressed the fiscal problems of the state and allowed me to avoid breaking one of my chief campaign promises--namely, an unwillingness to raise taxes. It angered my new colleagues, and I got slaughtered with it, but that didn't bother me. In fact, I was just pleased that I had a chance to present it. (Indeed, many of my provisions were eventually enacted, which I took as a silver-lining-type compliment.) It was the only budget I ever wrote in the legislature, but it would begin a pattern of going out on my own limb and crunching my own numbers that I would continue in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Source: Stand For Something, by John Kasich, p. 68 , May 10, 2006

10% tax cut to promote charitable giving

[Kasich supports] a 10% across-the-board tax cut for America’s working families. Kasich believes the tax code itself needs major reform. He has called for terminating the current tax code by the year 2002 and replacing it with one that is simpler and fairer. For Kasich, issues like cutting taxes and balancing the budget are a moral issue. “Tax cuts are not just about economic theory, they’re about empowering people to do what needs to be done in their own community.”
Source: www.k2k.org “On The Issues” 5/27/99 , May 27, 1999

Tax credits (100%) for charitable donations

We [should] expand the charity tax credit and reform the estate tax to allow money to be invested in local communities instead of going to the federal government. If we can take our dollars and inject them directly into our local communities, we will breathe new life into our community organizations and give renewed encouragement to those local leaders who work to solve our toughest problems. We should be encouraging people of wealth to invest directly in our communities.
Source: Columbus (OH) Urban League Speech, May 17, 1999 , May 17, 1999

$776B tax cut plan helps people afford health care

Kasich was asked, “How could the government help with senior’s prescription costs?” Kasich gave the same answer he gives to almost every other question these days: Government can help by cutting taxes. More specifically, by using the post-deficit era’s budget surpluses to slash federal income-tax rates 10% across the board -- a total of $776 billion in tax cuts over 10 years. Under the Kasich plan, an average family would save $840 a years in income taxes.
Source: (Cross-ref from Health Care) Time Magazine, p. 39 , Mar 8, 1999

Voted YES on eliminating the "marriage penalty".

Vote on a bill that would reduce taxes for married couple by approximately $195 billion over 10 years by removing provisions that make taxes for married couples higher than those for two single people. The bill is identical to HR 6 that was passed by the House in February, 2000.
Reference: Bill sponsored by Archer, R-TX; Bill HR 4810 ; vote number 2000-392 on Jul 12, 2000

Voted YES on $46 billion in tax cuts for small business.

Provide an estimated $46 billion in tax cuts over five years. Raise the minimum wage by $1 an hour over two years. Reduce estate and gift taxes, grant a full deduction on health insurance for self-employed individuals, increase the deductible percentage of business meal expenses to 60 percent in 2002, and designate 15 renewal communities in urban rural areas.
Reference: Bill sponsored by Lazio, R-NY; Bill HR 3081 ; vote number 2000-41 on Mar 9, 2000

Opposes both marriage penalty & federal tax increases.

Kasich opposes the CC survey questions on increasing taxes

The Christian Coalition voter guide [is] one of the most powerful tools Christians have ever had to impact our society during elections. This simple tool has helped educate tens of millions of citizens across this nation as to where candidates for public office stand on key faith and family issues.

Source: Christian Coalition Survey 10-CC-q11 on Aug 11, 2010

Supports the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.

Kasich signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge against raising taxes

[The ATR, Americans for Tax Reform, run by conservative lobbyist Grover Norquist, ask legislators to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge in each election cycle. Their self-description:]

In the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, candidates and incumbents solemnly bind themselves to oppose any and all tax increases. Since its rollout in 1986, the pledge has become de rigeur for Republicans seeking office, and is a necessity for Democrats running in Republican districts. Today the Taxpayer Protection Pledge is offered to every candidate for state office and to all incumbents. More than 1,100 state officeholders, from state representative to governor, have signed the Pledge.

The Taxpayer Protection Pledge: "I pledge to the taxpayers of my district and to the American people that I will: ONE, oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rate for individuals and business; and TWO, oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates."

Opponents' Opinion (from wikipedia.com):In Nov. 2011, Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) claimed that Congressional Republicans "are being led like puppets by Grover Norquist. They're giving speeches that we should compromise on our deficit, but never do they compromise on Grover Norquist. He is their leader." Since Norquist's pledge binds signatories to opposing deficit reduction agreements that include any element of increased tax revenue, some Republican deficit hawks now retired from office have stated that Norquist has become an obstacle to deficit reduction. Former Republican Senator Alan Simpson, co-chairman of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, has been particularly critical, describing Norquist's position as "no taxes, under any situation, even if your country goes to hell."

Source: Taxpayer Protection Pledge 12-ATR on Jan 1, 2012

Repeal marriage tax; cut middle class taxes.

Kasich signed the Contract with America:

[As part of the Contract with America, within 100 days we pledge to bring to the House Floor the following bill]:

The American Dream Restoration Act:
A $500-per-child tax credit, begin repeal of the marriage tax penalty, and creation of American Dream Savings Accounts to provide middle-class tax relief.
Source: Contract with America 93-CWA7 on Sep 27, 1994

Other candidates on Tax Reform: John Kasich on other issues:
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Page last updated: Dec 15, 2019