Ohio Governor Kasich likes to portray himself as a Budget Hawk. Yet, Ohio’s state budget increased by nearly one-third since Kasich took office (just over $50 billion to nearly $70 billion)! Kasich’s assertion that he is a fiscal conservative only works if you ignore boosting Medicaid, which will soon account for more than half of Ohio’s general budget. By contrast, spending on education is about half that amount. Medicaid spending will increase by nearly $5 billion from 2015 to 2017 alone.
Kasich is proud of his record cutting income taxes. While some taxes fell under Kasich, others rose. However, the tax burden on Ohio will likely climb as the feds begin to ratchet down Medicaid matching funds in 2017. As the graph below illustrates, expanding Medicaid under the assumption that the federal government will continue to pay much of the bill is a dangerous game for Ohio taxpayers.