Wednesday, June 19, 2019 | Updated at 11:44 AM ET


Why John Kasich is Defending Undocumented Immigrants

First Posted: Mar 15, 2016 07:58 AM EDT
Mitt Romney Joins John Kasich At Elective Eve Campaign Rally In Ohio

Photo : J.D. Pooley/Getty Images

As the Republicans brace for an all-important Ohio primary, the candidates are already making their last-minute pitches with the hope of swaying the voters to their respective sides.

Ohio Governor John Kasich will be putting his reputation on the line come Tuesday election. Losing another state to Donald Trump, and in his very hometown at that, says a lot about his local political career in Ohio. Could his very own people be loyal to him?

The Battle for Ohio

Kasich could very well be the anti-Trump GOP forces' best bet to prevent the outspoken New Yorker from getting the outright nomination. And that is why calls for the Ohio voters to vote for Kasich have grown louder in recent days, especially from the Republican camp.

Trump has made his move as well. In recent campaign rallies, he has already launched some tirades against Kasich. He expects to win Florida based on polls and, now, he's channeling his efforts to destroy another hometown hero to his favor.

But, for Ohio voters, it's easy to make out the striking difference between the two. For one, they are as different as night and day on their stand when it comes to the case of undocumented immigrants.

Kasich's Stand on Immigration

While Trump is a hardliner when it comes to saying no to undocumented immigrants, even proposing for the U.S.-Mexico bordering wall, Kasich has taken a whole lot of a softer stance on the matter.

Speaking in front of a crowd in Ohio, Kasich rationalized his position on immigration by drawing a line between undocumented immigrants who have criminal records and undocumented immigrants in general. He said that while those who violate the law should be deported, those who have been working hard to earn a living must be given the opportunity to have a path for legalization.

"Here is the fact, you don't actually think folks that we are going to drive around in Canton, Ohio, and yank people out of their homes and ship them to Mexico, leaving their kids on their front porch?" Kasich said. "You really think that is going to happen? Of course it is not going to happen. So I am trying to come up with the best way. It is called common sense."

In some of his previous statements, Kasich also expressed his different outlook on immigrants as opposed to that of Trump's. He said that these immigrants have already become "a very important part" of American society.

Kasich also said that going after all of these undocumented immigrants and hunting them down is not what the country is all about.

"A lot of these people who are here are some of the hardest-working, God-fearing, family-oriented people you can ever meet," Kasich said back in 2015.

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