Don’t count Ohio Gov. John Kasich in the crowd of Republicans who argue that Alabama Republican Roy Moore’s Senate election defeat Tuesday is an isolated event.
Kasich is warning anyone who will listen that the Republican Party is losing the support of both suburban voters and young people who will decide future elections.
Appearing on CNN Thursday night, Kasich said the Republican defeats in Alabama and last month in the Virginia gubernatorial election are signs that the suburban voters Republicans “have counted on” are drifting away from the party and turning toward Democratic candidates.
“The party is losing the future as we’re standing here today,” Kasich told CNN’s Anderson Cooper. “I mean the future is young people. Young people right now are not inclined to vote Republican; overwhelmingly against.”
In implicit criticism of Moore, an ultra-conservative accused of having pursued a romantic relationship more than three decades ago with a 14-year-old girl when he was in his 30s, Kasich said Republicans need “to have an agenda that is not reflected on yesterday, but on tomorrow.”
“And in addition if you are going to be a party that’s going to be narrow, that is going to try to shrink everything, whether it is going to be anti-immigration, anti-trade — that’s not going to make it,” Kasich said in a none-too-subtle jab at President Donald Trump.
Not everybody in the GOP agrees that Tuesday’s election result in Alabama, which Trump took by 28-percentage points just a year ago, was an indictment on the Republican party’s policies and direction.
“The message is very simple,” said Corry Bliss, who managed the 2016 re-election campaign of Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio. “People don’t vote for pedophiles.”