‘Not My Constituents’: Ohio Governor John Kasich targets, bans constituents from attending his presidential announcement

‘Twas the night before the rally, all was calm in the house,

Settling down for the day, with the Economist on my couch.

A text out of the blue: “Has your ticket been revoked?”

I checked my email to see if I’d been joked.

In disbelief of the news, I found that it was true,

A notice from Team Kasich: “Don’t come, we don’t like you”.

Kasich Notice

Truth is, I was excited to go to Gov. Kasich’s presidential announcement rally, and I wasn’t alone. Natalie Davis, my friend, colleague, and former classmate, gave a speech at a press conference afterwards where she wanted to respond to the Governor’s speech, but instead had to say: “I’m not sure what the governor said in there, because my ticket was revoked at the last minute.” Yea… and, as it turns out, many of us progressive activists were in the same boat–shut out from attending the event.

Natalie Speech

Our own Natalie Davis, giving a speech outside the Ohio Union today following Gov. Kasich’s presidential announcement

It’s true, we don’t like JobsOhio. We don’t like what he’s done with charter schools, hurting union workers, violating women’s rights, closing centers for the developmentally disabled, and a host of other policy atrocities; but, he’s a fellow OSU alumni running to be POTUS. “How firm thy friendship,” right? I guess not. At the event, I was still hoping the campaign was bluffing and that I could still see the speech. Then, I learned that my name, along with the names of other Ohio citizens, were put on a do-not-enter list. Literally, Kasich staffers, who were at least nice before turning rude, looked up our names after we showed them our tickets, and confirmed that our tickets had been unequivocally invalidated.

Departing from the queue of people waiting to get into the Ohio Union, and going across the street to where a Kasich protest was happening, we found several others who were also denied entry in the same last-minute fashion. Kasich’s campaign effectively blacklisted individuals and groups in order to silence their voices.

Let’s show him something else.

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If you were also banned from entering the event, please email me at vytas@democraticvoices.com, or comment below. We will add your name to the list. The nation needs to pay attention to Kasich’s non-transparent, non-inclusive tactics, especially now if they’re going to consider him for the role of our next President.

The List

Vytas Aukstuolis*

Natalie Davis*

Alex Kass*

Bryce Coder*

Eric Bloomfield*

Marques Jones*

Katherine Phillips

John Asendorf

John Spinelli

Kyle Strickland*

Stephanie Thompson*

Denny Check*

Kelly Harrop*

Kyle Serrott

Spencer Dirrig*

Michael Bowman*

(*current and former Ohio State students)