Ohio Gov. John Kasich told CNN’s Jake Tapper Sunday that Alabama GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore represents a troubling pathology that could precipitate his departure from the Republican party.
The governor, who is rumored to be exploring an independent bid for president in 2020, made the comments in response to a question from Tapper about Moore’s intense social conservatism. The former state Supreme Court judge has expressed support for criminalizing homosexual conduct, argued Muslims should not be seated in Congress, and was removed from the bench after he ordered state officials to ignore the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision legalizing same sex marriage.
“Those claims are ludicrous. And they’re divisive,” Kasich said.
“If the party can’t be fixed, Jake, then I’m not going to be able to support the party. Period. That’s the end of it.”
Kasich has been intensely critical of the president and the Republican party since his 2016 presidential campaign ended ignominiously. He called Trump’s response to white supremacist violence in Charlottesville, Va., “pathetic,” pilloried Trump’s executive order on refugees and migrants, and sided with NFL players in an ongoing dispute over the propriety of staging protests during the observance of the national anthem.
Rumors circulated throughout the summer that he planned to run for president on a national unity ticket with Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat. The pair denied any such ambitions.