Ohio gov says GOP infighting not a high priority

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CHILLICOTHE, Ohio (AP) -- Republican Gov. John Kasich (KAY-sihk) says a fight for control over the Ohio Republican Party has not been his highest priority.

Current state party Chairman Kevin DeWine has announced he's stepping down next week amid bitter party infighting with the governor.

DeWine's decision comes as Kasich allies had recruited a slate of challengers to the party's governing body, who they had believed would support DeWine's ouster at an April 13 meeting.

Kasich told The Columbus Dispatch (http://bit.ly/HjsON0 ) on Thursday night that he's "really not in the middle of all that stuff." He also added that he thinks the party will end up more unified.

Kasich made the comments prior to a fundraising speech in Chillicothe.

Former chairman Bob Bennett could take over for DeWine.

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Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com