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Ohio Gov. John Kasich gets bill to defund Planned Parenthood

Republican U.S. presidential candidate John Kasich reacts with his wife Karen (R) at his 2016 New Hampshire presidential primary night rally in Concord, New Hampshire February 9, 2016. REUTERS/Mary Schwalm TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
REUTERS

OHIO -- An Ohio bill that seeks to divert government money away from Planned Parenthood is headed to Republican Gov. John Kasich for his expected signature.

The GOP-led state House cleared the legislation Wednesday as Kasich, a Republican presidential contender, campaigned for the coming GOP primary in South Carolina.

Signing the bill might help Kasich with conservatives who dominate the state's Feb. 20 primary.

Final passage of the Ohio bill comes a day after the New Hampshire primary, where a tough stance against Planned Parenthood might have been received with less enthusiasm by its many moderate Republican voters.

Earlier Wednesday, Planned Parenthood supporters delivered handwritten valentines to state lawmakers in an effort to urge representatives to oppose the bill.

They also gave condoms and pamphlets about the organization's services.

Coming off a second-place finish in New Hampshire's Republican primary race, Kasich is taking a victory lap -- and lobbing attacks at some rival GOP candidates in the process.

In an interview with "CBS This Morning" early Wednesday, Kasich slammed former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush for his campaign's negative turn.

"The Bush campaign spent like -- they've already, they raised like $115 million, they spent like $50 million in New Hampshire," Kasich said. "They couldn't work with a positive message so they just go negative. Negative, negative, negative and distorting negative."

"As Arnold Schwarzenegger once told me about negative campaigns, he said, 'John, love the beatings,'" Kasich continued. "So I do love the beatings. But the fact is the Bush campaign can't figure out what it's for and the candidate can't seem to know what he's for, so they spend all their time bashing somebody else."

The Ohio governor added that if he gets hit by the negative advertising, "I'm not gonna take a pounding."

"I'm not some kind of a pin cushion or a marshmallow," he said. "But I think people are tired of the negativity."

Of his own focus on New Hampshire and the results it yielded Tuesday night, Kasich claimed that he loved the feeling of "being underestimated."

"A lot of people said a lot of things," he said. "They said I wasn't gonna get in the race, I wouldn't raise the money, I wouldn't make the debate, I wouldn't do well in New Hampshire, I was gonna drop out, I was gonna disappear and now we're here."

"So I love the un -- being underestimated," Kasich added. "I have all of my lifetime."

The GOP candidate looked forward to the next primary state but also also laid out a vision for his campaign beyond South Carolina.

"We're gonna compete here in parts of South Carolina but we're gonna be moving on a course to the rest of the country," he said.