Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, a very popular man among conservatives for his scathing critiques of President Obama and Black Lives Matter, recently tweeted a video from 2008 in which Republican presidential candidate John Kasich gets pulled over. Attached to the video of the traffic stop is another video of Kasich giving a speech in which he calls the cop who stopped him an “idiot.”
The video isn’t anything new; it’s been out there for years. But I think it should be a critical marker in this campaign.
Today, two states vote in winner-take-all(ish) contests. Between Arizona and Utah, 98 delegates are up for grabs. I say “ish” because for the winner of Utah to get all the delegates in the state, he must pass the 50% threshold. In Arizona, the winner must only achieve a plurality to snag all 58 delegates.
98 delegates would be enough for Ted Cruz to come within striking distance of Donald Trump–and as we’ve seen in head-to-head matches, Cruz crushes Trump by sizable margins. Unfortunately, there’s John Kasich.
The polls show Kasich once agin acting as a spoiler. The latest poll out of Arizona has Trump at 46%, Cruz at 33%, and Kasich at 17%. In Utah, it’s looking better for Cruz, but because of the threshold, Kasich could end up costing Cruz the state. The latest Y2 Analytics poll from Utah has Cruz at 53%, Kasich at 29%, and Trump at 11%.
Given all the head-to-head polls in which Cruz dominates Trump, it’s a safe bet to say that Kasich’s 17% in Arizona, and his 29% in Utah are bleeding Cruz. If Cruz doesn’t get the delegates tomorrow, it will be Kasich’s fault. In other words, a vote for John Kasich is a vote for Donald Trump.
Now, back to the video.
In his post-traffic stop speech, Kasich is shockingly rude, repeatedly referring to the police officer who pulled him over as an “idiot,” and calling himself “the client.” Entitled much?
KASICH: “Have you ever been stopped by a policeman who’s an idiot? I had this idiot pull me over…He says ‘You passed this emergency vehicle on the side of the road, and you didn’t yield’…The last thing I would ever do would be to pass an emergency–are you kidding me?
He says ‘I understand. Give me your license’…Comes back, gives me a ticket, says ‘You must report to court. If you don’t report to court, we’re putting a warrant out for your arrest.’ He’s an idiot! We just can’t act that way. What people resent are people who are in the government who don’t treat the client with respect.”
However, if you watch the footage from the actual traffic stop in which Kasich did indeed pass an emergency vehicle, the officer was extremely pleasant, and even apologetic, telling Kasich “it’s not a problem,” and simply explaining in a calm manner the way the ticket works.
The officer explained that because of the nature of the ticket–passing an emergency vehicle without yielding–there was a mandatory court appearance, and that if he didn’t show up for court, a warrant would be issued, and he could lose his license. He wasn’t mean about it–or even slightly rude. He said to a seemingly upset Kasich that “it’s not that big of an issue…it happens to everybody on occasion.”
John Kasich was treated with respect by the officer. In return, Kasich called the officer an “idiot” and referred to himself as “the client.”
Sure, when the video first surfaced, Kasich apologized. Big deal. Apologizing after you’re caught being a jerk doesn’t make you less of a jerk. It makes you a phony. What you do when you think no one is looking matters. Kasich likely thought his speech would never be made public, and that the dash cam footage would never surface. He was wrong.
Incidents like these are what reveal the character of a man. To many people, John Kasich is the amiable alternative to Donald Trump; he’s the Republican Mr. Congeniality. Republicans want that in a cycle dominated by Trump’s brutishness. Unfortunately, John Kasich isn’t the nice guy alternative. He’s a phony. He may not be a bloviating jackass like Trump, but loud and obnoxious isn’t the only kind of bad person. Bad apples come in all shapes and sizes.
Kasich plays the affable, if bumbling, governor quite well–but he’s not going to stop Trump. He’s won a single state. His home state. By 11 percent. That’s one for twenty-nine. He’s staying in the race to be Trump’s vice presidential candidate, or to convince the party leaders at the convention that he’s the only establishment alternative to Trump. Either way, it’s a douche move.
A vote for John Kasich is a vote for Donald Trump. Know this going into today’s primaries.