by Emily Catuccio
Republican presidential candidate and current governor of Ohio, John Kasich, spoke about social reform among other topics on January 26th 2016 at Franklin Pierce University in Rindge, New Hampshire.
The presidential candidate is garnering attention and attracted a crowd of about 100 people to his speech on the 26th.
Kasich discussed controversial issues ranging from education reform to immigration policy, and though he identifies as a Republican he started his speech by saying that “the Republican party is my vehicle and not my master.”
Some of the issues he discussed were straightforward, such as gun control. Kasich is strongly for the second amendment and wants to remove some of the challenges people face while trying to obtain a gun.
Kasichs stance on immigration policy included different consequences for different illegal immigrants. For law-abiding illegal immigrants, he wants to pave the path to United States citizenship. For those who aren’t so law-abiding, Kasich wants to send them back to where ever they are from.
Kasichs education policies are what really got the audience going. When asked how he would lower student debt, and his main plan of action was to get high schoolers enrolled in college classes more quickly; so they would spend less time in college, therefore avoiding the cost of a fourth year. He also suggested letting private sector banks in on student loans so there would no longer be a monopoly on the industry. He believes colleges should be taking it upon themselves to cut unnecessary expenses and be able to lower tuition.
At one point Kasich talked about wealth inequality being a result of lack of education, and during this, a member of the crowd stood up and became angry with him. She asked about those graduates who have a degree and are stuck working for minimum wage at a local coffee store, all the while drowning in debt. His response was that students should be selective in their degrees, and choose a degree that is in demand in the job market.
The event not only attracted students, but locals as well and even some people from out of state. Some of these people were from Massachusetts, Connecticut, and there was even a woman from South Carolina. Most of these potential voters were aware that Kasich was running, but not well aware of his politics.
“I really don’t know about this candidate which is why I came,” said Joe Beauregard, a senior at Pierce.
Then there were others who knew Kasichs campaign and had a variety of opinions about him. Sophomore Johnathon Spall said that Kasich “won’t win the presidential position, but he wants to run for cabinet.” Spall believes Kasich would have a better chance at winning a cabinet seat than he does with the presidency.
Others, such as Franklin Pierce University staff member Ann Goodrich-Bazan grew up in New Hampshire and believes all the presidential candidates need to pay a visit here. She also believes voters have responsibility too.
“There is an obligation for all New Hampshire residents to take all candidates very seriously,” said Goodrich-Bazan.
Locals of Rindge, Tom and Jeanette Uklig support Kasich in his campaign for the presidency. The Uklig’s believe that Kasich is the candidate that if elected, would work efficiently to get more things done. They attended this speech in support of Kasich, as well as to learn more about him and his plans for the future.