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Trump Wins Ohio; GOP Retains Statehouse Majority

Nov 4, 2020

Credit whitehouse.gov

The Associated Press reports President Trump has again carried Ohio, as he did four years ago. 

Meanwhile, the state's 16 members of Congress won on Tuesday. GOP legislators will keep “supermajorities” in the Statehouse, even after a federal bribery scandal involving former Republican Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder, who won re-election. More from Ohio Public Radio's Andy Chow:

Ohio Republican Party Chair Jane Timken took the stage just after midnight on election night to declare a win for President Donald Trump. 

 

Jane Timken: "That means the president's America First policies that resonates with Ohioans. I feel like we're gonna have a good night. It's gonna be close in the rest in the country but I continue to believe that Americans and Ohioans believe in the American dream." 

 

The results are still unofficial in Ohio. However, Trump has a lead of more than 470,000 votes in the state with more than 285,000 outstanding absentee and provisional ballots. 

 

The results watch party for the Ohio Republicans was an unusual event compared to past election nights. Instead of supporters gathering in a large ballroom, different Republican campaigns were set up in their own private rooms at a Westerville hotel with a live stream of the speakers once they took the stage. 

 

Among those speaker was U.S. Rob Portman who says Trump once again appealed to Ohioans with his economic message. 

 

Portman: "I'm confident that we will win Ohio. And I think the reason Republicans will win Ohio is very simple. The economic message really works here. And if you look at what happened in the economy for Ohio and for the country prior to the COVID crisis, you know, we were hitting on all cylinders." 

 

Trump's success in Ohio was a continuation of what he saw in 2016, with the historically Democratic counties of Mahoning and Lorain flipping to Trump.  

 

Republican strategist Mark Weaver says the election night results are a strong sign that Ohio is firmly a "red" state, a claim he made on election night four years ago. Weaver says people who used to align with Democrats are feeling forgotten by the party.  

 

Mark Weaver: "The big surprise is that pieces of eastern Ohio that used to be Democrat, reliably so are now turning Republican, Mahoning County perhaps being the most prominent of those." 

 

The night also went well for Republican legislative leaders. The Republican caucuses picked up seats in the Ohio House and Ohio Senate expanding the existing supermajority in the state. But the GOP did split on the Ohio Supreme Court, with Justice Judi French losing and Justice Sharon Kennedy keeping her seat on the bench.