Kasich Suspends Presidential Campaign
by Nick Castele
Gov. John Kasich has suspended his campaign for president, leaving Donald Trump the last Republican candidate standing.
"As I suspend my campaign today, I have renewed faith, deeper faith, that the Lord will show me the way forward and fulfill the purpose of my life," Kasich told supporters and media Wednesday afternoon. He did not mention whether he would support Trump in the general election.
The state Republican Party had put its weight behind Kasich. All statewide officeholders but one endorsed him. And that support paid off—at least in Ohio. Kasich won the state, shutting out Trump from securing pledged delegates here.
Now the question is whether those GOP officials who backed Kasich will endorse Trump, as he assumes the role of the apparent Republican nominee.
Republican Sen. Rob Portman congratulated Kasich in a written statement. Portman's campaign manager said in a separate statement that the senator will support the GOP nominee.
Karen Beckwith, chair of the political science department at Case Western Reserve University, said Trump has plenty of liabilities among constituencies critical to winning the state.
“He has a long record of statements about other politicians, other people in his party, not to mention people of other nationalities, and certainly his comments about women, are not likely to go over well in the state of Ohio,” Beckwith said.
A national CNN poll this week has both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders ahead of Trump in a hypothetical general election matchup.