John Kasich And Richard Nixon
This is a great all-American type story. Who gets to spend 20 minutes with a president unless you have something to say to the leader of the free world?
Kasich’s arrival at OSU has become worthy of a tall tale. Seething over a dorm citation, the freshman Kasich badgered his way into the office of the university president, Novice Fawcett. Then, so the story goes, he invited himself to Fawcett’s meeting the following day at the White House with President Richard Nixon. Fawcett refused to let Kasich tag along, but he agreed to deliver a letter.
While others of his generation were protesting Nixon, Kasich was plying him with encouragement and a friendly critique. Boldly, according to a 1999 profile by the Columbus Dispatch, he offered to “make myself available” should Nixon want even more advice from an 18-year-old college kid in Ohio.
Nixon accepted. For 20 minutes on Dec. 22, 1970, president and future candidate for president huddled inside the Oval Office.
“The bad news,” reflected Kasich in “Stand for Something,” his 2006 book, “is I would go on to spend 18 years in Congress, and if you go back and add up all the time I spent alone in the Oval Office with various presidents, you’ll see it doesn’t come close to those 20 minutes. I guess I peaked out at the age of 18. That’s when I should have retired.”