Governor John Kasich (R.-Ohio), in an interview aired Sunday morning on NBC's Meet the Press, stood his ground on remaining in the presidential race despite a chance it could strengthen Republican rival Donald Trump's position.
Kasich also said "under no circumstances," will he be real estate magnate Trump's or Sen. (R.-Tx.) Cruz's running mate.
The interviewer challenged Kasich on whether he should refrain from campaigning in Utah, since, if Ted Cruz wins half the vote there, he'll deny Trump any delegates and improve Kasich's chance of getting to Cleveland in a contested convention.
"I'm in Utah, you know why? Because I'm running for president. Because I want people to understand what is a good positive message with a record of accomplishment," Kasich said.
Kasich's Ohio win on Tuesday kept his run for presidency alive. He has 143 delegates, compared with Trump's 673 and Cruz's 410 delegates. In recent days, former 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney said a vote for Kasich helps "Trumpism."
"Well maybe Ted ought to get out because he can't win in the fall," Kasich said. "They try to tell me to get out of the race, how many times? And if Trump had won Ohio it would be over."
Kasich blamed the media for Trump's rise, saying the networks gave $1.8 billion-worth of free air time, while "I got like none."
Now, he said, "People are starting to hear me, and we're starting to rise."
"I'm going to compete across the country and tell people who I am and let the chips fall where they may, and let me also tell you: no one, no one is going to that convention with enough delegates. I will have more delegates moving in there that will give me momentum and then the delegates are going to decide who can win in the fall -- 'cause the other guys can't win in the fall -- Hillary will be president. And secondly, I've got the record, the experience and the vision and the ability to bring people together to be a good president. That's why I'm doing this."
Asked whether he would drop out of the race if Kasich thought he was inadvertently helping Trump gain the nomination, he responded, "I'm running for president. This isn't a parlor game of who gets this or who gets that... I was there in '76 when Reagan challenged the sitting president. They didn't like him doing it either, but you know what? His vision, his message mattered."