Governor John Kasich (R-OH)God wants Ohio to expand Medicaid, at least according to Governor John Kasich (R-OH).  Don’t worry though, he is a believer in small government.  Whew!  In remarks made to the media  on Tuesday(see video here) Kasich said:

“I mean, all of these bills are in, and I’ve made it clear to them that we need it. I mean, here I’m talking to a business group, talking about how important it is. It’ll either be in the budget or it’ll be later but I just wanna make it clear: I will not give up this fight till we get this done, period, exclamation point.”

“I’ve, I’ve, I’ve, I’ve pleaded, I’ve argued, I’ve presented, it’s what it is in this business, so… I’m not gonna give this up, I will not. I don’t care how long it takes, hopefully it’ll be sooner rather than longer, I’m gonna do my best. And I’m being, as I told you last week, Joe, sometimes pleasantly persistent, and maybe persistent without all the pleasantness. I mean, we just have to get this done.”

“Ya know, because people are poor doesn’t mean they don’t work hard. Because people are poor doesn’t mean that – it sometimes means they couldn’t pull themselves up by their bootstraps at some point in time. The most important thing for this legislature to think about: put yourself in somebody else’s shoes.”

“Put yourself in the shoes of a mother and a father with an adult child that’s struggling. Walk in somebody else’s moccasins. Understand that, ya know, poverty is real, and that when people are poor… I’ll tell ya somethin’, I had a; I had a comment; I had a conversation with a, one of the leaders… wasn’t one of the leaders, but one of the members of the legislature the other day.”

“I said, ‘I respect the fact that you believe in small government. I do too. I also happen to know that you’re a person of faith. Now, when you die and get to the, get to the, uh, to the meeting with St. Peter, he’s probably not gonna ask you much about what you did about keeping government small, but he’s going to ask you what you did for the poor. Better have a good answer.’”

“I can’t go any harder than that! I got nothing left than that, so… and I wanna compliment Jan Brewer, the gov- the conservative governor of Arizona, um, nobody would’ve ever thought… and so, this is not a support of Obamacare, this a support of helping our communities, our health care systems, the poor, the disabled, the addicted, and the mentally ill. That’s what this is about, and we need to do it as Ohioans.”

Apparently it is ok to mislead the public, the press and the Ohio Legislature on how the funding would actually works though.  While I agree we probably won’t be asked about how we kept government small we are not going to be asked about how well we spent other people’s money with entitlements.  Governor Kasich makes the typical mistake of seeing Matthew 25 through the lens of a nation-state, when Jesus was referring to individual believers.

“When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’ “Then they also will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life,” (Matthew 25:31-46, NKJV).

While Jesus as the Judge is addressing the nations gathered what He describes are individual actions,  how well did you take care of the stranger, the hungry, the naked and the ill.  How a legislator voted on whether the taxpayers should fund these things isn’t what He is talking about; rather how charitable the legislator as an individual was.

All of that is pointless, however, if you lack a relationship with Christ.

HT: Ohio Capitol Blog

Photo credit: Governor Steve Beshear via Flickr (CC-By-NC-ND 2.0)

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1 comment
  1. May I ask what the theological basis is for saying Matthew 25 refers to individuals and should not be generalized to nations and states, but then saying that abortion is something that should be taken up at a political level, rather than left to a personal level?

    I am pro-life, and I believe that we, as a people, should use our governments to provide for and protect those who cannot care for themselves, whether that be the poor or the unborn. I guess I could see an argument that governments should be kept separate, and the mandates that Christ gives aren’t important to government, but I don’t understand what criteria are being used to determine where government should or shouldn’t provide support for moral and religious causes like poverty and life.

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