2018 elections

Trump Tries to Deny Kasich Credit for Ohio Election Results

Governor John Kasich provided some key late support for Ohio congressional candidate Troy Balderson. But Trump’s not having any of that. Photo: Justin Merriman/Getty Images

When it comes to mendacious Trump tweets, this doesn’t rank especially high in the quantity or quality of misinformation. But it’s still pretty ridiculous:

That seems more than a little bit unlikely. The congressional Republicans who were bankrolling Balderson’s campaign helped pull Kasich into the contest, and paid for this ad:

And Kasich’s support for Balderson seemed to matter, as Cook Political Report’s wizard David Wasserman said on Election Night:

Trump, of course, was already hogging credit (prematurely, since the race has still not been called thanks to outstanding provisional ballots and a possible recount) and not-so-subtly dissing Balderson on that same Election Night:

Democrats were universally expected to win early voting heavily, even if Republicans won, so this is another bit of Trump misinformation.

Trump’s claims that Kasich’s “unpopularity” was a problem for Balderson doesn’t make a lot of sense; by every available measurement Kasich is more popular in Ohio than Trump (last month Morning Consult had Kasich’s approval/disapproval rating in Ohio at 48/33; Trump’s was at 47/49). And blaming Lieutenant Governor Mary Taylor’s May gubernatorial primary loss to Mike DeWine on Kasich is a little weird: DeWine was the heavy, early, favorite, and Taylor spent most of the campaign distancing herself from Kasich and trying to pick up anti-Establishment votes.

In Trump’s defense, sort of: Kasich fired the first shot over Ohio’s 12th District results, blaming Balderson’s tepid performance in a district that has been held perpetually and easily by Republicans on you-know-who:

“Well, the voters here sent a message to the Republicans to knock it off,” Kasich, who has been critical of Mr. Trump, [said]. “Stop the chaos, the division, no more of this family separation that we see at the border or taking people’s health care away. I think that have — basically have had enough and they’re sending a message to the Republicans, including the Republican in the White House.”

As for Trump’s counterattack on the “very unpopular” governor, Kasich’s response was pretty acidic:

I don’t think they are going to kiss and make up any time soon.

Trump Denies Kasich Any Credit for Ohio Outcome