The Trump campaign has officially tossed Ohio Republican Party Chairman Matt Borges to the wind. In a letter to the ORP State Central Committee members who vote for Chairman, Trump’s Ohio director, Robert Paduchik said that Borges no longer has a relationship with the campaign. In doing so, Paduchik has thrown a monkey wrench into Borges’ ambitious goals within the national party and caused him some trouble within the rank and file of Ohio Republicans.
This isn’t much of a shocker as Borges has spent that last couple of weeks on a media tour saying he isn’t sure he will even vote for the presidential nominee of the party which he chairs. Borges’ own wife told the Cincinnati Enquirer, “Trump was so bad, he made the dog throw up.”
While there are some people who aren’t enthused with the nominee, it is the job of the chairman to support him. Borges hasn’t gotten over the embarrassing failure of John Kasich’s campaign, so this really isn’t that shocking. Since Trump is a non traditional nominee, it has given Borges the opportunity to act publicly as he would privately. If Borges can’t do his job, he should resign. This isn’t a private citizen, this is the Chairman of the Ohio Republican Party. It is his job to support the nominee. If he can’t, then he should resign. But, taking a closer look at the situation will give you a better view of the agenda.
Borges instead is attempting to grab the mantle of the Never Trump movement and become the next RNC Chair. If Hillary Clinton is the next president, then Reince Priebus is out, so this is part of the reason why there is this backlash. What you are seeing publicly this year is the manipulation and gaming that typically goes on behind the scenes of the party. The only thing abnormal about it is that it is playing out in public. This is about power more than it is about doing what’s right.
However it got there… @ChairmanBorges is named as the primary challenger to @Reince in today's Politico Playbook, via the NYT. pic.twitter.com/98uEuISfQN
— Andrew Tobias (@AndrewJTobias) October 14, 2016
Borges is a Kasich loyalist. Like Borges, Kasich has been plotting his next move. It’s apparent that he wants to run again. With Borges as the RNC Chair, perhaps a primary could be manipulated in Kasich’s favor.
Kasich and his hand picked chairman don’t seem to understand that Kasich’s prolonged vanity campaign helped Trump win the nomination by dividing the vote. It was obvious to anyone who wasn’t a Kasich supporter that his campaign wasn’t going anywhere, but he remained in the race. John Kasich’s ambitions and his consultants drive to continue a failed campaign handed states like Virginia to Trump and helped set up this situation.
I always tell people that there is more fighting within a party than between the two parties. That is what is being played out now. The curtain was pulled back a bit earlier this year when State Treasurer Josh Mandel endorsed Marco Rubio. Borges referred to Mandel as a “bit player” for supporting a candidate who wasn’t John Kasich. Believe me when I say that scorecards are kept with regards to who someone supports in a primary.
In a sour reply, Borges referred to Paduchik as a “staffer.” This is typical Borges. He tries to demean people he is threatened by. Paduchik was Rob Portman’s 2010 campaign manager and was the Ohio point person for Bush Cheney in 2000 and 2004. He was running campaigns before Borges even had his criminal record expunged or even had tax liens.
Just a few weeks ago, Borges looked to be playing the role of Trump fan boy. Some pictures were being texted around by people who were laughing that Kasich would be blowing his whistle and reprimanding the Ohio Republican Party Chairman for supporting the Republican presidential nominee.
Within days, Borges started the Trump bashing circuit. If Hillary wins and Borges becomes RNC Chair, then he can try to give Kasich the upper hand in the 2020 primary. That’s what all of this is about. This isn’t about character, it’s about manipulating for more power. Kasich made Borges. Borges owes him.
Paduchik’s letter has closed another door on Matt’s face. Since Borges hadn’t outright disavowed Trump, if Trump wins Ohio, Borges could have attempted to take credit for it in a run for RNC Chair. Now he no longer can.
Paduchik has also left Borges vulnerable to State Central Committee members who are unhappy with how the presidential race has been handled by the Ohio Republican Party. One told me, “I was supportive of Governor Kasich until his stunt at the convention. The ORP has done an embarrassing job the past few months. Hard questions need to be answered.”
It doesn’t matter what your feelings are about Trump. The Chairman has a job and if he can’t do that job, he should resign. Will the State Central Committee members do the jobs they were elected to or will they also bow down and kiss John Kasich’s ring?