Kasich: People are not happy with GOP being 'small, angry and narrow'

Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) said on Sunday that the Republican Party is "losing the future" by turning off millennials. 

"I look at Alabama and I say people are not happy with us being small, angry and narrow," Kasich said on NBC News's "Meet the Press," referring to last week's special Senate election. "They're starting to say no. That means that most of us who believe in a positive party are beginning to win, but we have a long way to go." 

The Ohio governor also cited stances on various issues, such as immigration, health care and trade, that he said could hinder the GOP in the future. 

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"Instead of losing the future, which is what we're doing today by turning off millennials," Kasich said.  

"We're beginning to see more of a tug of war pulling people toward a better position on the party. That's my sense, so I'm kind of optimistic with some of the things," he said.

Kasich's comments come as the GOP looks to defend Republican strongholds in the House and Senate, as well as in statehouses across the country, in 2018. 

The anti-establishment wing of the GOP suffered a blow last week when Doug Jones became the first Democrat elected to represent Alabama in the Senate in 25 years. 

While establishment Republicans such as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBudowsky: Pelosi can break shutdown stalemate GOP seeks to change narrative in shutdown fight On The Money: Shutdown Day 32 | Senate to vote on dueling funding measures | GOP looks to change narrative | Dems press Trump on recalled workers | Kudlow predicts economy will 'snap back' after shutdown MORE (R-Ky.) supported Moore's primary opponent, Sen. Luther StrangeLuther Johnson StrangeDomestic influence campaigns borrow from Russia’s playbook Overnight Defense: Senate bucks Trump with Yemen war vote, resolution calling crown prince 'responsible' for Khashoggi killing | House briefing on Saudi Arabia fails to move needle | Inhofe casts doubt on Space Force Five things to watch in Mississippi Senate race MORE (R-Ala.), President TrumpDonald John TrumpCoast Guard chief: 'Unacceptable' that service members must rely on food pantries, donations amid shutdown Dem lawmaker apologizes after saying it's never been legal in US to force people to work for free Grassley to hold drug pricing hearing MORE and his former chief strategist, Stephen Bannon, rallied around Republican Roy MooreRoy Stewart MooreHillicon Valley: Dem blasts groups behind Senate campaign disinformation effort | FCC chief declines to give briefing on location-data sales | Ocasio-Cortez tops lawmakers on social media | Trump officials to ease drone rules Domestic influence campaigns borrow from Russia’s playbook Jones asks federal officials to investigate misinformation campaign tactics in Alabama Senate race MORE, who was plagued by sexual misconduct allegations. 

Kasich, who has proven to be a thorn in the Trump administration's side, has been mentioned as possible 2020 presidential contender. He ran an unsuccessful bid in 2016.