Ohio Columnist Howard Wilkinson: “The Specter of Trump Hangs Heavy over Ohio GOP Senate Primary”
May 10, 2023
In case you missed it, today Ohio columnist Howard Wilkinson outlined Donald Trump’s influence on the already “bruising” and “combative” Ohio Senate Republican primary. Whether it’s on Trump or questioning one another’s electability and conservative credentials, the candidates in this race have wasted no time attacking each other to get ahead.
Ideastream: Commentary: The specter of Trump hangs heavy over Ohio GOP Senate primary
May 10, 2023
- Right now, there are only two announced candidates for the GOP Senate primary: Cleveland area gazillionaire Bernie Moreno, who made his money selling cars; and Matt Dolan, the state senator from suburban Cleveland whose family owns the Cleveland Guardians baseball team.
- There will be more. Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose has been lusting for the nomination for years now. Congressman Warren Davidson of Troy, whose newly sprawling district reaches down into western Hamilton County, is being urged to run by the ultra-conservative and deep-pocketed Club for Growth.
- But when they think about Trump and how to deal with him in their campaigns, they all approach it from different angles:
- Moreno: Slavish devotion and complete adoration.
- Dolan: Ignoring Trump as he did in his 2022 Senate campaign, focusing instead on trashing Joe Biden and Sherrod Brown.
- LaRose: Secretly yearning for Trump’s support. But trying hard to act cool and pretending it doesn’t matter.
- Davidson: Would likely tread lightly around Trump. After all, Trump and the Club For Growth have been feuding for quite some time.
- Last week, LaRose was the subject of a story in Politico that probably wouldn’t sit well with Trump. In fact, it probably torpedoed any chance LaRose had to win Trump’s endorsement.
- Then, LaRose made it worse by speculating about conversations between Trump and Max Miller, the northeast Ohio congressman who used to work in Trump’s White House. Miller is the son-in-law of Moreno.
- All of this talk by LaRose — which was never meant to see the light of day — has just emboldened Moreno to trumpet the fact that, when he entered the race, Trump praised him on Truth Social.
- [Moreno’s] declaration that Donald Trump was “the greatest president of my lifetime” on an April YouTube video…
- Dolan was asked in an April appearance on CBS if he would support Trump if he is the Republican presidential nominee…Don’t see I’d support Trump in there anywhere, do you?
- That set off Moreno saying what Dolan said about possibly not supporting the GOP nominee for president was “disqualifying, but that’s up to the voters.”