One of the worst kept secrets in politics is officially out! Ohio Governor John Kasich is running for President, and he's got a lot of catching up to do.
National polls have Ohio's top lawmaker well back of the pack. That said, according to Xavier Professor of Political Science Mack Mariani, Kasich deserves to be taken seriously.
"He has what it takes and he certainly checks a lot of boxes in terms of budget experience, in terms of governing experience," Mariani tells FOX19 NOW.
The reality is that right now Kasich is playing catch-up. In fact, he's got just one and half percent of the vote. Not nearly popular enough outside of Ohio to crack the top ten and qualify for next month's Republican Presidential Debate in Cleveland and he could be running from behind all the way to the National Convention.
No one is saying Kasich can't win the nomination but if he falls short Mariani believes Vice President Kasich could be a game changer for the party: "I think if you have a Jeb Bush or Marco Rubio ending up the candidate I think it’s going to be very hard for either of them not to look to Ohio," adds Mariani.
History tells us that no Republican has ever been elected to the White House without winning Ohio and Kasich is extremely popular here. In last year's election he won 86 of Ohio's 88 counties, but it means he'd have to take a backseat to someone else.
I sat down with the governor last summer and I asked him--Would you consider running on the 2016 ticket as Vice President?
"No, I don't think that would be in the cards," he told me.
During the very same interview Kasich told me he was happy as Governor and had no plans to run for President. If he's unsuccessful in his bid for President maybe, just maybe he'll change his mind again. That's the bottom line and that's Reality Check.