The midterm election season began in earnest Tuesday with primaries in Indiana and Ohio. Ohio’s hotly contested Republican Senate race tested the enduring power of former President Donald Trump‘s influence, as his endorsed candidate, JD Vance, defeated six others for the GOP nomination for the seat held by retiring Republican Sen. Rob Portman.
Trump-endorsed Republicans Madison Gesiotto Gilbert and Max Miller won U.S. House primaries in northeast Ohio. Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose, also endorsed by Trump, won the state’s Republican primary over a conservative challenger who questioned the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election results.
HERE’S WHAT HAPPENED:
Election 2022: JD Vance wins Ohio’s GOP Senate primary
Ohio Republican Gov. DeWine will face Nan Whaley this fall
Indiana GOP lawmakers hold off many hard-right challengers
Brown wins Ohio rematch with progressive activist Turner
Primary takeaways: Trump passes test as kingmaker in Ohio
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Donald Trump-endorsed Republican Madison Gesiotto Gilbert has won a crowded primary for an open U.S. House seat in northeast Ohio.
Gilbert, a North Canton columnist and conservative commentator who worked on Trump’s 2020 campaign, bested six other Republicans on Tuesday to secure the GOP nomination for the Akron-area 13th Congressional District.
Gilbert will face Democratic state Rep. Emilia Sykes, who was unopposed in the primary, this November. Their contest will be one of the year’s most competitive, with the newly drawn district viewed as a toss-up slightly favoring Democrats.
Among rivals defeated by Gilbert were anti-abortion activist Janet Folger Porter; lawyer and entrepreneur Greg Wheeler; and Shay Hawkins, an attorney and trade association president.
INDIANAPOLIS - Jennifer-Ruth Green has won the Republican nomination in a northwestern Indiana congressional district that the GOP is looking to capture after several decades as a Democratic stronghold.
Green, a Black U.S. Air Force veteran, won Tuesday’s primary in the 1st Congressional District to challenge Democratic Rep. Frank Mrvan, who won his first term in 2020 following the retirement of 18-term Democratic Rep. Pete Visclosky.
The 1st District hugs Indiana’s Lake Michigan shoreline near Chicago. Democrats have typically won there by large margins, but former President Donald Trump closed the gap by appealing to working-class voters in a district with some of the country’s largest steel mills.
Green emerged from a seven-candidate Republican field that included former LaPorte Mayor Blair Milo, who was well connected with Indiana’s Republican hierarchy after spending four years as a member of GOP Gov. Eric Holcomb’s Cabinet leading state job-training programs.
Green had a combat deployment to Iraq and is now a lieutenant colonel in the Indiana Air National Guard. She had criticized Milo as not supportive enough of Trump, citing Milo’s decision to step down as a delegate to the 2016 Republican convention rather than vote for Trump as the nominee.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - U.S. Senate candidate JD Vance struck a unifying tone as he accepted the Republican Party’s nomination Tuesday.
He complimented his GOP opponents - including silencing boos for his most bitter rival, former Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel — and pledged to appeal to the state’s many moderates heading into November.
He said Democratic nominee Tim Ryan, a 10-term congressman, is “the very worst of modern American politics” for saying he stands for one thing and voting for another. He called Ryan “a guy who has spent 20 years failing the people of Youngstown and now wants the people of Ohio to give him a promotion.”
Vance made it a point to reach out to Mandel’s supporters.
“Some of the best people in the state of Ohio voted for Josh Mandel tonight. I hope to earn your support,” he said.
But Vance called the conservative Club for Growth, which endorsed Mandel early and spent millions in negative attack ads against Vance, “one of the grossest organizations in professional establishment Washington.”
COLUMBUS, Ohio - U.S. Rep. Shontel Brown has won her Democratic primary in Cleveland, holding off a second challenge from progressive firebrand Nina Turner.
Brown’s victory in Ohio’s 11th Congressional District on Tuesday followed Turner’s loss of some key support she had from the party’s left flank during the pair’s first faceoff last August.
Turner, a former state senator, was endorsed by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, whose 2020 presidential campaign she co-chaired. On the eve of Tuesday’s primary, she was also endorsed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. But other members of “the squad” laid low this time, and the Congressional Progressive Caucus wound up endorsing Brown.
With her win, Brown is expected to hold on to the seat in November in the heavily Democratic district. She is a former member of the Cuyahoga County Council and chair of the county Democratic Party.
INDIANAPOLIS - Former state Sen. Erin Houchin has won the crowded Republican primary for an open congressional seat from a solidly GOP district in southern Indiana.
Houchin emerged Tuesday from a nine-candidate Republican field for the 9th Congressional District seat that opened up when current GOP Rep. Trey Hollingsworth unexpectedly announced in January he wouldn’t seek reelection after three terms.
The 45-year-old Houchin finished second to Hollingsworth in the 2016 GOP primary race. This time, she was able to overcome a self-funded campaign by wealthy trucking company owner Mike Sodrel, who attempted a political comeback for the seat he held for a single term after a 2004 election win.
Houchin resigned her state Senate seat in February after seven years to focus on the congressional race. Houchin was the only woman among the Republican candidates, and she also drew on her ties to GOP activists from her previous stints as former U.S. Sen. Dan Coats’ southeastern Indiana director and the 9th District’s Republican chair.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - JD Vance has won the Republican primary for Ohio’s open Senate seat, notching a major victory for former President Donald Trump, who had endorsed him.
The “Hillbilly Elegy” author defeated six other candidates Tuesday to claim the Republican nomination for the seat being vacated by retiring Republican Rob Portman.
Trump endorsed Vance less than three weeks before the primary at a time when state treasurer Josh Mandel and investment banker Mike Gibbons were leading in the polls.
The former president has staked his status as a GOP kingmaker on his ability to mobilize his supporters as he eyes another White House run in 2024.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Republican Max Miller has won a U.S. House primary in northeast Ohio, in an early midterm victory for Donald Trump, who had endorsed him.
Miller, a former campaign and White House aide to the former president, prevailed in a four-way GOP primary Tuesday in Ohio’s newly drawn 7th Congressional District.
His path to the nomination eased when incumbent Rep. Bob Gibbs dropped out of contention in April, citing the chaos created by Ohio’s unresolved redistricting fight.
Miller will be favored this fall in the Republican-leaning district, which sprawls west and south of Cleveland. He faces Democrat Matthew Diemer, a Bay Village media entrepreneur and first-time candidate who was unopposed after two challengers left the race.
Miller was initially recruited to challenge U.S. Rep. Anthony Gonzalez, one of 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach Trump, but Gonzalez retired.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Nan Whaley has won the Democratic nomination for Ohio governor, becoming the first woman in the state’s history to receive a major party’s backing for the office.
Ohio has never elected a female governor, and the former Dayton mayor figures to be an underdog against incumbent Republican Gov. Mike DeWine, who sewed up his party’s nomination despite angering conservatives with his aggressive pandemic mandates in a state that has swung to the right in recent years.
Whaley defeated former Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley on Tuesday in a race that drew little attention as much of the state focused on the contentious Senate Republican primary and ongoing redistricting legal battle.
She promised during the campaign to protect abortion rights and wants the state to add a $15 minimum wage, universal preschool and better access to child care.
Ohio hasn’t elected a Democrat to be governor since 2006. Despite being a presidential bellwether state for over a half century until 2020, Ohio has become more Republican under the influence of former President Donald Trump.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio Republican Gov. Mike DeWine won his party’s nomination for a second term in office despite angering many conservatives early in the pandemic with aggressive stay-at-home mandates and business shutdowns.
DeWine on Tuesday topped three far-right opponents, including former U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci, who painted the governor as a moderate not aligned with former President Donald Trump.
Despite some notable splits with Trump, DeWine managed to win a shot at a second term by relying on a huge fundraising advantage and a network of supporters built from a political career spanning more than 40 years.
DeWine will be a favorite again in November against the winner of the Democratic primary between Nan Whaley and John Cranley, two former Ohio mayors who have far less name recognition in a state that hasn’t elected a Democrat governor since 2006.
DeWine touted his longtime record of opposing abortion, calling himself “the most pro-life governor in Ohio history.”
In his first term, DeWine signed a bill banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected - at the time one of the most stringent restrictions in the nation. In the past year, he signed a “Stand Your Ground” law and scored a major win when Intel announced it was investing $20 billion in two semiconductor factories near Columbus.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose has won the state’s Republican primary over a conservative challenger who questioned the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election results.
LaRose defeated former state lawmaker John Adams in Tuesday’s primary election. He will face Democrat Chelsea Clark, a suburban Cincinnati City Council member and businesswoman, in November. Clark was unopposed in Tuesday’s primary.
LaRose was elected Ohio secretary of state in 2018 and presided over the state’s 2020 election. LaRose defended the integrity of the vote count in the weeks after the 2020 election, saying, “Elections are run better and more honestly than really I think they ever have been.” This year, however, while trying to win Donald Trump’s endorsement, he changed his tune, saying he agreed with the former president that “voter fraud is a serious problem.”
LaRose had Trump’s endorsement in the race. He had backed Trump’s first run for office in 2016 and was part of a team that handled logistics for Trump’s 2017 inauguration.
Adams is an Army and Navy veteran and former state lawmaker who had criticized LaRose for his role in postponing the March 2020 primary during the coronavirus pandemic.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan has won the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate in Ohio.
The 10-term congressman from Ohio’s blue-collar Mahoning Valley defeated progressive Morgan Harper, a former consumer protection attorney, and one other rival to claim the Democratic nomination for the seat being vacated by retiring Republican Rob Portman.
Ryan’s victory was widely expected, given his long history in office and his backing by U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, the state’s highest-ranking Democrat. Democrats see the November election as one of its best chances nationally to flip a seat.
Ryan will face the winner of the crowded Republican primary in the November general election. “Hillbilly Elegy” author JD Vance, former state treasurer Josh Mandel and investment banker Mike Gibbons are among the candidates competing for the GOP nomination. Vance was endorsed by former President Donald Trump.
Ryan directed his campaign message at working class Ohio residents, promising to increase jobs and boost wages.
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