Former Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) is expected to speak on behalf of former Vice President Joe Biden at the Democratic National Convention next month.
It’s unclear if Kasich will explicitly endorse the presumptive Democratic nominee when he speaks at the convention. But the expected remarks would amount to a major show of support for Biden by a lifelong Republican who rose to political prominence amid the Tea Party movement a decade ago.
The plans were first reported on Monday by The Associated Press. Spokespeople for Biden’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee did not immediately respond to The Hill’s request for comment.
Kasich, who unsuccessfully ran for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, has been fiercely critical of President Trump, going as far as to call for his impeachment last year.
Kasich’s expected speech on Biden’s behalf could also give the former vice president a boost in Ohio, a longtime swing state that has increasingly moved in Republicans’ favor in recent years. During his 2016 presidential bid, Ohio was the only state Kasich won.
Kasich isn’t the only Republican supporting Biden’s campaign to oust Trump in November. A handful of prominent Republicans founded a political action committee, The Lincoln Project, late last year to oppose the president’s reelection. The group has spent heavily on advertising criticizing Trump in recent months.
Recent polls show an increasingly dim electoral outlook for Trump, who has come under intense scrutiny for his handling of the coronavirus pandemic and nationwide protests over racial injustice and police brutality.
Nationally, Biden leads Trump by widening margins, with some polls showing him ahead by double digits. The former vice president is also leading in a handful of crucial battleground states that Trump carried in 2016.
Recent polls in Ohio suggest a tight race between Trump and Biden.
A Quinnipiac University survey fielded in June showed the former vice president leading by 1 point, well within the margin of error. Likewise, a Fox News poll conducted in May put Biden ahead by 2 points.
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