Kasich step closer to presidential race

Ohio governor forms committee to raise money for possible run.

Gov. John Kasich filed papers Monday with the Internal Revenue Service to establish a campaign committee that will raise money to pay for his travel as he considers a run for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.

Although Kasich said Sunday on NBC’s Meet the Press he has yet to decide whether to run for the presidency, the formation of the committee is a crucial first step toward entering the race.

In a statement announcing the new committee, Kasich said “it’s time to put aside the petty differences that divide us and rediscover the values we all share.”

The second-term governor said when “when we remember our shared values, we can come together and do what we all know needs to be done,” such as balancing the annual federal deficit, overhauling the U.S. tax code and “help make the world a safer place by spreading freedom and prosperity.”

IRS approval of the committee, called a “New Day for America,” is regarded as a formality. Once the IRS does so, Kasich can accept donations from people without the committee paying taxes on those contributions.

The committee on Monday also released a website that features a video of Kasich. Kasich this past weekend spoke in the early presidential primary states of New Hampshire and South Carolina.

The board of directors of the committee includes former U.S. Sen. John E. Sununu of New Hampshire, son of the former New Hampshire governor who later served as White House chief of staff to President George H.W. Bush.

Other directors listed are former Ohio House Speaker Jo Ann Davidson; Philip H. Geier, former executive with Interpublic Group, an advertising firm; Bruce Soll, senior vice president at L Brands; and Matthew Yuskewich, a certified public accountant from Columbus.

Geier, who is from New York, is a major donor to Republican causes and candidates. According to Opensecrets.org, he donated $1 million in 2012 to American Crossroads, a super political action committee whose founders include Karl Rove, a White House political adviser to former President George W. Bush.

The committee does not guarantee Kasich will run for president. Should he decide to enter the race, he would have to create a presidential campaign committee.

(Alan Johnson and Randy Ludlow of the Columbus Dispatch contributed to this story.)

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