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Ohio Gov Touts Balanced Budget Amendment in Maine

Mal Leary
Ohio Gov. John Kasich with Maine Gov. Paul LePage at an event Thursday promoting a balanced budget amendment.

AUGUSTA, Maine - Ohio Gov. John Kasich says he's hopeful that Maine will join 27 other states calling for a constitutional convention to support a federal balanced budget amendment.

The potential Republican presidential candidate joined Maine Gov. LePage at the State House on Thursday to urge lawmakers to support the measure being introduced by Republican Senate President Michael Thibodeau.

It takes 34 states to trigger a convention and 38 states to ratify a constitutional amendment. Idaho, South Carolina and West Virginia are among other states Kasich says he's closely watching.

The idea is unlikely to get much support from Democrats, who control the Maine House. Democratic House Speaker Mark Eves of North Berwick called it a "political gimmick.'' He says Maine should be focused on strengthening its economy, not "playing presidential politics.''