Jim Renacci, former Congressman and successful Ohio businessman, officially launched his campaign for Governor of Ohio in what promises to be a bruising 2022 GOP primary battle against incumbent Mike DeWine.
“This election, we have a choice to make. Do we want to become an economic powerhouse again and attract jobs and opportunity? Or do we keep going down the devastating DeWine route?” Renacci asked in a video explaining his motivation for launching the campaign.
The effort comes as Governor DeWine has faced sharp backlash from other Republicans across the state for his choices throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Ohio was one of the last Republican-led states to lift their mask mandates and business restrictions. Further, DeWine is using taxpayer funds from the federal coronavirus relief package to orchestrate a vaccine lottery to encourage Ohioans to receive the coronavirus vaccine in exchange for the chance to receive a million-dollar cash prize.
“If you compare Ohio to other states, he is definitely failing,” Renacci told Fox News last month. “He has not been able to move the needle.”
Additionally, Renacci has repeatedly criticized the decisions made by DeWine and officials in his administration, saying in a tweet, “Enough is enough with Ohio’s wannabe Cuomo, Mike DeWine. Now is the time to put a conservative leader in charge. It’s time to make the people of this great state a priority.”
Enough is enough with Ohio’s wannabe Cuomo, Mike DeWine. Now is the time to put a conservative leader in charge. It’s time to make the people of this great state a priority. https://t.co/iRxp7Y1iiP pic.twitter.com/VXfMgikRjn
— Jim Renacci (@JimRenacci) June 9, 2021
Renacci has been widely expected to enter the race. He has been working closely with President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager, Brad Parscale. “Ohio needs a change, and I think Jim Renacci is the right guy to stand up to Biden’s job-killing liberal agenda,” Parscale said earlier this year.
A recent poll conducted by Trump’s former pollster, Tony Fabrizio, demonstrated DeWine’s vulnerability to Renacci. Of the voters surveyed, Renacci polled at 42 percent compared to DeWine’s 34 percent, in a hypothetical head-to-head challenge.
Renacci was previously elected to represent the 16th Congressional District as a part of the historic “red wave” in 2010. After running for Senate, Renacci has remained plugged into the Ohio Republican Party and served as a local county Republican Party chair.
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