The Buckeye State’s governor had a lot say on his former campaign adversary’s signing of an executive order banning entry to the U.S. for refugees, migrants and foreign nationals from seven mostly Muslim countries on Friday.
In a telephone interview with The Washington Post on Sunday, Gov. John Kasich called President Donald Trump’s immigration order “ham-handed” since it “sowed so much confusion” among travelers and “sent a message somehow that the United States was looking sideways at Muslims.”
Kasich said Trump “absolutely has a right to be concerned about the kind of people that are coming in,” and his anger was directed more toward White House aides rather than the president himself for their handling and implementation of his executive order.
In the end, Kasich declined to answer whether a major Republican figure could try to challenge Trump in the 2020 election, saying it’s too early to make a judgement call after just one week.
“That question is so out there it doesn’t even dignify a response,” he said. “It’s very early in this administration. … Sometimes an administration has to get its sea legs and figure out how to function.”
Kasich underscored his traditional Republican worldview with a call for supporting allies in the North American Treaty Organization (NATO) in an op-ed article for Time magazine earlier this month.