Republican governor John Kasich took to the convention floor Tuesday night, offering a vision of American economic revival mirrored on the success of his state of Ohio.
"We've made real progress in Ohio," he said. "But we need a new partner in Washington -- this relationship is just not working."
His pitch -- that Ohio has improved dramatically in the past few years -- poses a bit of a messaging problem for Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who has centered his campaign attacks on President Obama's inability to lead the nation out of its economic malaise.
Kasich said Ohio was 48th in the nation in job creation when he took office in 2011. "We had an $8 billion budget deficit," he said. "Our people were hurting, our families were hurting as a result of the recession."
He boasted about balancing the budget without a tax increase. "We could not raise taxes because we were not competitive," he said. "We did it the way a family does it. We sat down and set priorities."
Kasich did not mention the impact of President Obama's auto bailout on the state.
He said that Ohio "restored common sense" with environmental regulations, and complained of the "smothering affect" of regulations on businesses.
"I want to tell you ladies and gentlemen, the actions that we took were not always easy," he said. "The actions that we took were not always popular. But when you get yourself in public office, you must lead, you must do what's necessary."
Ohio is now fourth in job creation, according to Kasich.
"We went from 89 cents in our rainy day fund to $500 million dollars in surplus," he said.
He finished with a call to action.
"This is not about Republican or Democrat," Kasich said. "It is about our children, it's about our families, it is about our country, and frankly, ladies and gentlemen, it is about the world."
"We've got to leave here and march, and make sure Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are president and vice president of the United States."