Gubernatorial Race Talking Points Part I

John Kasich

  • He worked with college presidents to create an innovative reform plan that tied state appropriations to graduation rates. Currently, less than half of the nearly 438,000 students who enter public colleges in Ohio graduate. Kasich wanted to ensure that higher education is more accountable to the young adults it is meant to serve by tying money to the number of graduates, rather than the number of students enrolled.
  • Kasich also worked successfully to limit in-state undergraduate tuition and general fee increases to no more than 2 percent at four-year universities and $100 at two-year community colleges. As a result several schools found ways to freeze tuition.
  • He developed a program to help college-age dropouts achieve a high-school diploma in order to learn skills that lead to paychecks.
  • He’s partnered with and the National Federation of Independent Business to create a one-stop-shop website for job seekers through an innovative platform that matches skills with “on demand” job vacancies
  • Ohio lost about 350,000 jobs under former Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland, but the state has gained almost a quarter of a million private sector jobs (241,800) since Gov. Kasich took over.
  • The state is seeing economic success stories, like Amazon’s $1 billion investment in Central Ohio and General Electric’s moving of operations to Cincinnati, which show the promise of Kasich’s vision for economic development.
  • Ohio’s unemployment rate has dropped from 9.1 percent in January, 2011, when Kasich took office, to 7 percent in August.
  • Kasich was able to close an $8 billion budget shortfall while also cutting taxes by more than $3 billion. Looking at it another way: A single mother with one child and an income of $30,000 will save $220 in taxes this year.


Tom Corbett

  • Since Governor Corbett assumed office the state has created 184,00 new private sector jobs. As a result, Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate has dropped to 5.6 percent, well below the national average of 6.1 percent.
  • The PEW Research Center estimates that number to grow by another 76,000 this year alone.
  • Corbett launched the Ready to Succeed Scholarship program, which will provide an additional $25 million for middle income students to earn a degree. He also presented a challenge to all post-secondary institutions to hold the line on student debt by matching these grants.
  • Over the past three years he has reduced taxes by a billion dollars. As a result the state is becoming a leader in biotech and technology. One great metaphor for the change being seen in Pennsylvania is Google, which is renovating an old Nabisco factory to house engineers and computer scientists to “develop the next set of Google products.”
  • He appointed a special commission to recommend initiatives to make college more affordable and workforce training more suited to labor needs. Among the recommendations were “performance scorecards” for colleges that would take into account controlling tuition costs and increasing access for lower income students.
  • Good quote: “Job creators want to know if Pennsylvania has prepared our young adults in the trades and disciplines that are always in demand. And our answer will be YES”


Rick Scott:

  • In the four years before Gov. Scott took office Florida lost more than 800,000, the unemployment rate rose to 11.1 percent. Under Gov. Scott 462,000 private sector jobs have been created and the unemployment rate is below the national average of 6.2 percent.
  • Rick Scott on college tuition: “Florida parents and students cannot afford to see tuition at Florida schools continue to climb. It’s too high. We need to find a way to keep college affordable for all Floridians. One of my top priorities is to create jobs and opportunities for Florida Families. That starts with a great education at an affordable to our students and families.”
  • His budget provided $3.7 billion to Florida’s state university system and $2 billion for the community college system. This resulted in the record funding for higher education
  • He instituted a performance-based funding program for colleges. Hundreds of millions of dollars worth of state support is now focused on ensuring that institutes are effective in preparing students for the future.
  • He has fought increased tuition costs through measures such as: Eliminating the automatic statutory inflation rate, creating the $10,000 bachelor degree program for high-demand job fields, creating UF online (an alternative bachelor’s degree program with capped tuition), etc.
  • Quote on affordability: “Tuition is too high; and our students are graduating with too much debt. It is important to address the issue of college affordability to ensure higher education is attainable for Floridians so they can get the best job possible.”
  • He has repealed nearly 3,000 state regulations.
  • The governor is recommending a $30 million initiative focused on providing more Floridians with training for high wage careers. The Workforce State Training Program will provide flexible funding to businesses seeking to train employees, as well as individual seeking STEM training and other specialized high skill occupations. This includes scholarships for attending colleges and vocational centers.
  • Scott created the Department of Economic Opportunity to support innovative public-private partnerships to accelerate the recovery.