By Jill Terreri
In a front-page story in the Wall Street Journal last week, Ohio Gov. John Kasich - a potential 2016 White House hopeful - shared his plans to remake the GOP with a more compassionate form of conservatism, one that helps the poor.
"More so than any other leading Republican, Gov. Kasich is using his perch to promote a blend of conservative orthodoxy leavened with liberal policies meant to help the poor, the mentally ill and the uninsured," writes Neil King Jr. in an article published on Thursday.
This approach to public policy should sound familiar to Western New York voters, because one of the region's most well-known names helped inspire Kasich.
King ended his story with an anecodte of Kasich stopping in Buffalo earlier this summer on a drive home from Cape Cod, Mass.
"He asked a few people at random if they had ever met Jack Kemp, the late Buffalo Bills quarterback who became a congressman and 1996 vice-presidential nominee. Mr. Kemp, who once described himself as a 'bleeding-heart conservative,' built a reputation as a Republican who focused on urban minorities and the poor.
'It was Jack, over and over again, how talked about lifting people, about hopes and dreams,' Mr. Kasich said. 'Jack had a profound impact on the conservative moment. Maybe I have a chance to do that too.'"