Welcome To The #OHSEN Slugfest: LaRose Launch Throws Gasoline On Republican Primary Infighting
July 21, 2023
Welcome to the Ohio Democratic Party’s new newsletter: the Ohio Senate Slugfest, where we’ll highlight everything you need to know about the long, brutal, and expensive primary taking shape in the Buckeye State.
It was a chaos-filled week as Frank LaRose’s no good, very bad launch threw gasoline on Ohio’s Republican Senate primary, with every candidate hurling insults at one another. After this week, one thing is clear: no matter who emerges from this primary, they will have spent months focused on attacking one another – instead of fighting for Ohioans – leaving them bruised and badly damaged entering the general election.
Here’s what you missed this week in what has already been called one of the “messiest, “most expensive” and “bruising” primary battles in the country.
WHAT OHIOANS ARE READING ABOUT THE OHIO SENATE SLUGFEST
SPOILER ALERT: IT’S NOT GOOD.
The Vindicator: “[LaRose] didn’t mention statements he made a few months ago at a Republican event that Trump’s endorsement matters, but “there’s probably another 60 percent of the party that doesn’t care who he endorses.’… LaRose will have to rely on donors and outside special-interest groups to prop up his campaign.”
WLWT: “Party primaries often leave blood on the ground as the one in 2022 demonstrated.”
WSYX: “The campaign is expected to be brutal. Can the Republicans survive more than nine months of bashing each other in attack ads?”
Tribune Chronicle: “Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose, who announced he’s running for the U.S. Senate next year, finds himself needing to make up ground financially against the two other Republicans seeking the party’s nomination.”
Columbus Dispatch: LaRose announcement sets up messy GOP primary
Cleveland.com: “If LaRose is signaling plans to paint his primary opponents as rich and out-of-town, Moreno issued a statement on Monday calling LaRose a career politician.”
The Messenger: Another competitive and expensive GOP primary is brewing in the Buckeye State
NBC: “an already fractious primary field”
Axios: Republican Frank LaRose joins crowded Ohio Senate primary
Politico: Ohio’s messy GOP Senate primary gets a third candidate
THE INFIGHTING REACHES NEW LEVELS
Republicans – including Bernie Moreno – warned that a crowded field would lead to a “messy primary where we kill each other.” Five days after LaRose’s launch, the writing is on the wall.
A review of all of the recent shots fired by the #OHSEN field and their allies:
FRANK LAROSE HAUNTED BY CLOSE TIES TO AMENDMENT THAT WOULD BENEFIT SPECIAL INTERESTS AND SILENCE OHIOANS
With early voting underway for the August special election, Frank LaRose is being haunted by his close ties to an amendment that would benefit special interests while silencing the Ohioans he’s supposed to be working for. What you need to know:
Statehouse News Bureau: LaRose enters race for the U.S. Senate while being at the forefront of a controversial ballot issue
Cleveland.com: Secretary of State Frank LaRose has gone out on a limb to support Issue 1. What will that mean for his U.S. Senate race?: Analysis
“And while it’s too simple to say that [LaRose’s] political fortunes will rise or fall with State Issue 1, his close ties to the measure will offer plenty of chances for him to catch attacks from across the political spectrum.”
Cleveland.com: “Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose’s Senate primary race will be preceded by his tough race to get Issue 1 passed in a special August election.”
Ohio Capital Journal: “Over the next four months, LaRose will have to balance Senate fundraising and campaigning with running two elections… LaRose is one of the proposal’s chief advocates and after initially speaking against August elections when lawmakers eliminated them last year, LaRose supported bringing back this August election to consider Issue 1.”
The Vindicator: “Finally, LaRose is one of the primary backers of state Issue 1, which would make it much harder for constitutional amendments to pass if voters approve it Aug. 8. LaRose is so connected to the issue that his Senate cause could be impacted if it is defeated.”
WEWS: Concerns raised over Sec. of State LaRose’s ethics before August election
QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
Darrel Rowland: “And you thought last year’s Ohio GOP primary for US Senate was fun…”