Kasich doesn't regret skipping convention
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CLEVELAND — Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Thursday said he was happy with his decision to not address the GOP convention this week, in the wake of Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzDemocratic strategist warns Beto should be ‘careful’ with social media presence Hillary advisers battle over whether she’ll run in 2020 O'Rourke writes blog post describing a literal run from near the capitol to near the White House MORE’s controversial appearance.

"I think you can all understand why I didn't show up to speak at a convention, by the way, after what you saw last night," the former presidential contender told a breakfast with Buckeye State Republicans.


Cruz, a Texas senator whose primary bid also failed against Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpMichelle Obama says not always easy to live up to "we go high" Georgia certifies elections results in bitterly fought governor's race Trump defends border deployment amid fresh scrutiny MORE, now the party nominee, on Wednesday night declined to endorse Trump at the Republican National Convention, sending the event into chaos.

Trump said the snub was "no big deal" in a late-night tweet, but campaign officials spent Thursday morning on television networks attacking Cruz's decision not to endorse.

Kasich has also not endorsed Trump after the bitter GOP presidential primary. He emphasized Thursday that he was still focused on helping campaign for Republicans, including Sens. Kelly AyotteKelly Ann AyotteElection Countdown: O'Rourke brings in massive M haul | Deal on judges lets senators return to the trail | Hurricane puts Florida candidates in the spotlight | Adelson spending big to save GOP in midterms GOP mulls having outside counsel question Kavanaugh, Ford Pallbearers, speakers announced for McCain's DC memorial service and Capitol ceremony MORE (R-N.H.) and John McCainJohn Sidney McCainTrump set to have close ally Graham in powerful chairmanship Cindy McCain takes aim at Trump: We need a strong leader, 'not a negative Nancy' McCain would have said ‘enough’ to acrimony in midterms, says Cindy McCain MORE (R-Ariz.).

Kasich acknowledged his Trump convention snub has created some awkwardness for state party officials.

He mentioned Matt Borges, the state GOP chairman, remarking, "I have personally made his job more difficult."

Democratic Senate candidate Ted Strickland this week cited Kasich skipping the convention to knock incumbent Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanThe case for bipartisan solutions GOP lawmakers condemn attempted attacks on Democrats Trump takes steps to punish Saudi Arabia MORE (R).

Portman is one of the GOP's most vulnerable senators this year and endorsed Trump shortly after Kasich ended his own bid. 

"Portman does not have the courage that John Kasich has," Strickland said. 

The governor also touted the fact that Cleveland this week has been largely calm with just a handful of tense moments involving protesters and police. Most expected many rowdy protests at the convention.

"We think at the end of it there will be economic gain and job creation that will come from this," Kasich said.

Kasich exited the event Thursday morning without taking questions.

Portman also spoke at the breakfast, praising Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PencePence: US will hold those responsible for Khashoggi's murder accountable Trump privately asking aides if Pence is loyal: report North Korea's Kim oversees new weapons test MORE's speech Wednesday night, the Indiana governor's first as vice presidential nominee. 

"I believe we are more unified than ever after this week," Portman said. 

—This story was updated at 9:33 a.m.