Kasich looks beyond SC: ‘Keep your seat belts fastened’
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Republican presidential hopeful John Kasich on Thursday emphasized the staying power of his campaign, painting a path to the nomination that extends past this weekend’s South Carolina primary.

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“For everybody that has some hope that I can win, just keep your seat belt fastened. There’s a long, long way to go,” Kasich said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

The Ohio governor encouraged his supporters to “keep the faith,” pointing to his strategy to compete in the Deep South and score some major wins on his home turf in the Midwest. 

“We got to the Deep South, as you know in Mississippi, we’ve got [former Senate majority leader] Trent Lott, and really the whole establishment pretty much locked down in Mississippi,” he said.

“We’re moving over in Alabama with the support of the governor,” Kasich added. “At some point, you know, we’re going to get up to Illinois, we’re going to go to Michigan, where I’ve spent a lot of time, winner-take-all in Ohio, Pennsylvania.”

national poll released on Thursday showed Kasich in a virtual tie with Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioAna Navarro lashes out at Rubio for calling outrage over Trump's 'go back' tweet 'self righteous' US-Saudi Arabia policy needs a dose of 'realpolitik' Media cried wolf: Calling every Republican a racist lost its bite MORE (R-Fla.) for third place in the primary race.

Kasich said he’s used to being doubted.

“You know, they doubted me before — they always doubt me. It’s always great to be underestimated.”