A big development in the upcoming race for US Senate in 2022, with Republican incumbent Rob Portman saying he's no longer running. One high profile possible candidate is out.
A spokesman for Congressman Jim Jordan (R-04, Urbana) says he won't be running for Portman's seat.
The spokesman says Jordan, a strong ally of former President Trump who won re-election by almost a two to one margin, will run for his seat again, though his district may look different after Congressional lines are redrawn this year. Ohio could lose one Congressional district when last year's Census counts are reported April 30.
This is considered a huge break in that race for the Republicans who want to run. And the leading contenders are all also vocal supporters of Donald Trump.
That list of potential candidates could include Jane Timken, who became chairman of the Ohio Republican Party in 2017 with the support of newly-elected President Trump by ousting Matt Borges, a supporter of former presidential candidate and Gov. John Kasich. Timken tweeted this after Portman's announcement:
— Ohio Republicans (@ohiogop) January 25, 2021
Also weighing the option to run is former state treasurer and 2012 failed Senate candidate Josh Mandel, who shared this on Monday:
— Karen Kasler (@karenkasler) January 25, 2021
Mandel lost to U.S. Sen Sherrod Brown (D-OH) by 6 points in 2012. He had planned to launch a rematch against Brown in 2018, but dropped out of the race when his wife became seriously ill. Later in 2018, he filed paperwork to run for the U.S. House, but a campaign never materialized.
Former Congressman and failed 2018 candidate for governor Jim Renacci also is thought to be interested. Renacci got out of the 2018 gubernatorial primary to oppose Brown in the Senate race, which he said he did at President Trump's urging. He lost to Brown by nearly 7 points. But Renacci may be thinking of challenging Gov. Mike DeWine again. He's tweeted criticisms of state spending and COVID-related policies, and some have been obviously aimed at DeWine:
Corruption only continues if we elected politicians who allow it to.https://t.co/BHVjkOsQjM
— Jim Renacci (@JimRenacci) December 25, 2020
When asked if he'd run for governor, he said in a recent town hall that he would do "whatever is required".
On the Democratic side, Dayton mayor Nan Whaley has already said she’s not running for re-election to that office, and tweeted out that she's "still deciding what I will do next":
Thank you all for the encouraging words! Today's news is another reminder how competitive Ohio will be next year. While I'm still deciding what I will do next, I hope you'll support us as we do everything we can do to support Democrats in 2022. https://t.co/mx9zrvbSsB
— Nan Whaley (@nanwhaley) January 25, 2021
Also interested in the Senate race but saying "I haven’t made a decision yet but I’m looking seriously at it" is Youngstown area Congressman Tim Ryan (D-13, Niles):
I’m overwhelmed by supporters who are reaching out to encourage me to run for Senate. I haven’t made a decision yet but I’m looking seriously at it. Ohio deserves leaders who fight for working people. #OHSen https://t.co/FzRIn9bHfw
— Tim Ryan (@TimRyan) January 25, 2021
And joining the group is Michael Coleman, who left office in 2016 as the longest-serving mayor in Columbus' history.
As a result of calls, emails and out reach, I am considering whether I should be a candidate for the United States Senate. Now is a time to elect a person who has a record of bringing people together to solve tough problems.
— Mike Coleman (@MichaelBColeman) January 28, 2021
There's also a new name coming up in political circles as a possible candidate: former Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton, who resigned that job in June after criticism from Republican state lawmakers, along with protests at her home and threats of violence. She left state government entirely in August for a position at the nonprofit Columbus Foundation. There are reports that supporters are polling to determine her name ID and popularity as a possible candidate.