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Ohio Governor John Kasich on the Only Way Health Care Reform Can Succeed

John Kasich Campaigns In Maryland Ahead Of State PrimaryJohn Kasich Campaigns In Maryland Ahead Of State Primary
Former Republican presidential hopeful John Kasich Alex Wong/Getty Images

Ohio Governor John Kasich, a 2016 candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, believes the GOP needs to work with Democrats on a health care bill to shore up Obamacare and the medical system at large.

“It should be bipartisan,” Kasich told attendees at Fortune‘s CEO Initiative conference in New York Monday, referring to health care reform. “You can’t fix anything [without that].”

Kasich has been strongly opposed to current Republican efforts to repeal Obamacare, including the Graham- Cassidy bill introduced by Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana. Graham Cassidy is structured to slash federal spending on health care, particularly the Medicaid program for low-income Americans—a program that Kasich expanded in his state under Obamacare.

“We’ve got the lowest uninsured rate in the history of the state, I think that’s true… because we reformed things,” he said Monday. “Now was the reform easy? No, but we got it done…We go and we do reform that’s common sense, and we don’t care about the politics.”

Arizona Sen. John McCain recently said that he would oppose Graham-Cassidy because of the process that led to the bill, which does not fall under regular legislative order. McCain says he’d like to see health care legislation go through the Senate committee process with bipartisan negotiations. The proposal effectively died on Monday when Maine Senator Susan Collins announced her opposition to it. That leaves the GOP incapable of securing even a simple majority on the proposal.