Ohio Democrats are set to pick their new party chair Thursday. And party insiders are starting to rally around two of their six choices.
Former Ohio Democratic Party Chair David Pepper resigned at the end of last month, saying it was time for a new leader to take over the helm. Pepper had held that post for five years.
The new chair will have to figure out new strategies for winning in Ohio. The party has not won a single, non-judicial statewide seat for more than a decade. And in the most recent election, Ohio re-elected President Donald Trump with a larger margin than in 2016.
University of Cincinnati Political Science Professor David Niven says the new chair will have two important roles - rallying the troops and overseeing the party itself.
“This is somebody who is going to be the head cheerleader but also the principal," Niven says.
U.S. Sen Sherrod Brown has endorsed Liz Walters for ODP chair. She is not in this story because she said she couldn't talk on the record by the time of my deadline. But here are the other five candidates under consideration for the post. https://t.co/1a3BFuDkix
— Jo Ingles (@joingles) January 12, 2021
While there are six candidates, most of the attention is going to Antoinette Wilson, who ran Supreme Court Justice Jennifer Brunner’s campaign last year, and Liz Walters. She’s a former ODP executive who has won support of U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown and others within the party.
Both Walters and Wilson participated in a zoom call on Ohio's Democratic Party's Facebook Page on Tuesday night to answer questions from members of the organization's executive committee. The party will pick the new chair Thursday.