Kasich, After Attending Netanyahu’s Speech, Says He’s ‘Thinking About’ 2016 Run

Alex Pappas Political Reporter
Font Size:

WASHINGTON — After attending Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address to Congress on Tuesday, Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich told reporters he is actively considering a run for the White House in 2016.

“I’m thinking about it,” Kasich said outside the House chamber in response to a question from The Daily Caller. “But I haven’t made any decision.”

Kasich, being a former Republican congressman, has lifetime floor privileges and therefore sat with lawmakers in the House chamber during Netanyahu’s speech.

“I served here for a long time, and for 18 years, I served on the Armed Services Committee,” he told a gaggle of reporters. “So I’ve had a great interest in foreign affairs for a very long time. But being the governor of a very big and important state, I want to lend my support.”

Asked about the address, the former Republican congressman said: “It was a terrific speech. He made a great case. He’s just a powerful dynamic leader.”

“The reason I’m here is because I know how much Israel means to us as an ally,” he continued. “We understand its strategic importance. And then on top of all of that, I’m not just worried about the threat to Israel from a nuclear Iran, but I’m very worried about the threat to the United States.”

Asked about the handful of Democrats who protested the speech, the former Fox News pundit said: “I think part of it is they want to support to the president, and they felt maybe he was being dissed or whatever. I don’t get hung up on those kinds of things. I thought it was a good turnout. I think the speech was received enthusiastically by both sides.”

The governor balked at the suggestion from a reporter that he was attending the speech to bone up on foreign policy.

“I don’t need to bolster any foreign policy credentials,” Kasich replied. “I’ve been working in foreign policy for many, many years.”

Follow Alex on Twitter