Ohio Republican Josh Mandel announced his candidacy for the state’s open Senate seat on Wednesday as a rebuke to the impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump.

The 43-year-old Marine Corps veteran and former Ohio treasurer cited the trial as the impetus for his decision to run for what is expected to be one of the most hotly contested Senate seats in the country.

“Watching this sham and unconstitutional impeachment has made my blood boil and motivated me to run for U.S. Senate. It’s sickening to see radical liberals and fake Republicans in Washington engage in this second assault on President Donald Trump and the millions of us who supported him,” he said. “I’m going to Washington to fight for President Trump’s America First Agenda and to pulverize the Uniparty – that cabal of Democrats and Republicans who sound the same, stand for nothing and are more interested in cocktail party invites than defending the Constitution.”

An ardent supporter of the former president, Mandel was the first statewide official in Ohio to back Trump in 2016, and he noted in his campaign announcement that he helped raise $500,000 for Trump’s reelection campaign as part of his involvement in “Trump 500.”

“For four years, President Trump fought tooth and nail to advance a conservative ideology and improve the lives of Ohioans,” he added. “My candidacy is about standing up for working people, economic freedom and individual liberty. I will wake up everyday scratching and clawing to stop Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi from their assault on American values.”

Mandel unsuccessfully challenged Democratic Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown in 2012 and prematurely ended a 2018 campaign because of family health concerns.

Since incumbent Sen. Rob Portman announced that he would not run for reelection in 2022, several names have been floated as potential contenders for the soon-to-be-open seat. House Republican and Trump ally Rep. Jim Jordan has said he will not run for the open seat after fueling rumors that he might just days earlier. Ohio Republican Party Chairwoman Jane Timken announced last week that she would be leaving her role amid speculation that she’s set to enter the race as well.

On the Democrat side, Rep. Tim Ryan, who unsuccessfully ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020 and unsuccessfully challenged Nancy Pelosi with a bid to be House Speaker years prior, has teased the possibility of running for the open seat, even fundraising off the prospective candidacy.

Though traditionally considered a swing state, Ohio has been trending toward Republican candidates in recent years. Trump handily carried the Buckeye State in both of his presidential runs, and the GOP currently holds all six statewide executive offices. Still, Democrats, bolstered by Brown’s reelection in 2018, believe Portman’s open seat provides a prime pickup opportunity for the party, which will be defending a narrow majority in the upper chamber in 2022.

Author: Mike Brest

Source: Washington Examiner: Ohio Republican Josh Mandel announces run for open Senate seat due to ‘sham’ impeachment

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