Sunday, Oct 21, 2018
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Politics

BEFORE THE INAUGURATION

Ohio Gov. Kasich to meet with GOP lawmakers in Washington

Plans to discuss health-care reform

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WASHINGTON — Ohio Gov. John Kasich will give his views on the future of healthcare in the United States during a private meeting with Republican lawmakers today, held before celebrating on Friday the inauguration of the GOP president who beat him for the nation’s top office.

Mr. Kasich and Ohio Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor co-signed a letter to Senate and House Republicans calling for a “thoughtful strategy to repeal and replace Obamacare.”

The meetings in three different congressional office buildings take place as Washington gears up for the inauguration Friday of New York real estate magnate Donald Trump as president and Indiana Gov. Mike Pence as vice president.

Among those traveling from northwest Ohio are 27 students and two faculty members from St. Francis de Sales High School in Toledo. The chartered bus left this morning. The faculty members are Dean of Men Carl Collier and English teacher Frannie Jagielski. The high school said Mr. Collier has been making this trip with students since 1993.

They will also visit historic landmarks and museums while in D.C..

The Ohio Republican Party has taken over rooms in the Capitol Skyline Hotel, a mile from the Capitol to celebrate the swearing-in of a Republican president, for a reception tonight. Most or all of Ohio’s statewide Republican officeholders are expected, along with the Republican congressional delegation, some Republican state lawmakers, and friends and donors.

The party at the Capitol Skyline will not be the celebration many Ohio Republicans were hoping for.

Mr. Kasich ran for the GOP nomination in a crowded field of 17 with the strong backing of the Ohio GOP, and won the Ohio GOP primary, but was forced to concede the nomination to Mr. Trump.

The Ohio governor did not endorse Mr. Trump, and the Republican Party’s torn loyalty to Mr. Kasich and Mr. Trump led to the former chairman, Matt Borges, being defeated for re-election earlier this month by Trump loyalist Jane Timken of Canton.

Mr. Kasich’s three meetings today are with Sen. John McCain (R., Ariz.) to talk national security and two private, roundtable discussions with members of the Senate Finance Committee and the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

The Kasich-Taylor letter on healthcare warns of the consequences of repealing the Affordable Care Act, which passed in 2010 requiring all Americans to have health insurance, setting strict rules on health coverage, and providing a government subsidy for those who couldn’t afford to buy insurance.

They said they support “a single repeal-and-replace package that quickly repairs damage caused by Obamacare, protects those who have gained coverage since 2010, and retains key state-requested reforms that support Medicaid program performance improvements.”

One million Ohio residents, including 500,000 with mental illness, and 37,000 veterans and their family members, obtained coverage through the federal exchange or Medicaid, and are in danger of losing that coverage, the letter says.

Contact Tom Troy at: tomtroy@theblade.com, 419-724-6058, and on Twitter @TomFTroy.
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