Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s new book, "Two Paths: America Divided or United," examines his experience on the 2016 campaign trail and the election that exposed a divided nation.
According to Kasich, the only way to move forward as a country is to put our differences aside.
“We need to take a deep breath and start listening to one another again,” he said during an interview with Boston Public Radio Wednesday, “and put ourselves in a position where we use our common humanity to solve problems.”
Kasich expressed support for the recent Women’s March on Washington, but when asked about his record on women’s rights, Kasich insisted there are more pressing issues to discuss.
“We can either spend our time arguing about abortion, or we can figure out how to build a relationship that’s positive, and then we can discuss the issues that are more thorny,” Kasich said. “If we’re going to pick out issues of which you and I can fight about, I don’t think that’s very smart, not at this point.”
Kasich compared Republicans who wouldn’t question decisions in their own party with New Englanders who wouldn’t question Tom Brady during Deflategate.
“I’m not [like] many people in New England who didn’t think it was an outrage that Brady was accused of deflating the ball,” he said. “We’re so wrapped up in our own stuff, we can’t see the forest because of all the trees.”
Even if you disagree with someone, Kasich emphasized compassion over everything else. In 1998, he voted to impeach President Clinton on all four charges made against him, yet he treated Clinton with respect, Kasich said.
“I was standing outside of the House of Representatives … and then, walking up the stairs was the president and Mrs. Clinton,” Kasich said. “I said, God, I just hope your life is going to get better, and I’m going to pray for you. And we moved on.”
“You do what you have to do, but be nice about it,” Kasich continued. “Don’t be hating somebody because of your position.”
To hear Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s full interview with BPR, click on the audio player above.