Ohio Senator Portman, in Final Policy Effort in Senate, Calls for More Global Trade

U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) retires at the end of the year, but before he does, he hopes to have a hand in reenergizing openness toward global trade, a policy perspective that hasn’t been ascendant in the Biden administration or the preceding Trump administration. 

In a guest column for the D.C.-based Hill newspaper, Portman and his Democratic Delaware colleague Chris Coons called on Congress to pass a legislative package facilitating foreign trade agreements. The lawmakers particularly urged enactment of their Trading System Preservation Act. The act would enable the president to iron out industry-specific trade deals with other nations that are part of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and would allow negotiation of comprehensive agreements with Ecuador, Taiwan, the United Kingdom and Kenya. 

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Retiring Ohio Senator Portman Helps Codify Gay Marriage into Law

Same-sex marriage is on track to becoming codified in federal statute and retiring U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) is celebrating his role as a key driver of the change.

In 2013, Portman became the first Republican senator to support redefining marriage as something other than the matrimonial union between one man and one woman. He attributed his reversal of his prior opposition to gay marriage to his son having come out two years earlier.

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U.S. Senate to Vote on ‘Respect for Marriage Act’ as Several Groups Question its Constitutionality

Several groups argue the Respect for Marriage Act (ROMA) currently before the U.S. Senate is unconstitutional, and if enacted, will eventually be struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The bill, HR 8404, was introduced in the House by U.S. Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-NY, on July 18 and passed by a vote of 267-157 the next day. The U.S. Senate took it up on November 14.

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Ohio Senators Portman and Brown Sponsor Senate Version of Bill Expanding Low-Income Housing Tax Credit

Ohio’s two U.S. senators this week proposed a Senate bill making full-time students eligible for the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program. 

U.S. Representatives Brad Wenstrup (R-OH-2) and Danny Davis (D-IL-7) introduced a House version of the measure earlier this week. The proposed change to the program would make LIHTC, which provides tax relief to developers who build or rehabilitate low-cost rental units, allow full-time students to live on sites that were funded by the credit. The current prohibition on such students living in those buildings was intended to prevent LIHTC from aiding the construction of dormitories. 

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Both Sides in Abortion Debate Plan Legislative Pushes in Ohio

Advocates on both sides of the abortion debate see Ohio’s elections earlier this week as reason to seek change. 

In 2019, Republican Governor Mike DeWine signed the Heartbeat Act to protect unborn life in cases when doctors can detect a fetal heartbeat. The act’s fate is now tied up in the courts but pro-lifers have reason for optimism that the law will be upheld as Republicans maintained control of the Ohio Supreme Court by sweeping the judicial elections this year. 

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Vance Wins Ohio Senate Seat

Ohio Republican J.D. Vance prevailed in his race Tuesday against U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH-13) for the U.S. Senate seat from which Republican Rob Portman is retiring this year. 

With 95 percent of the state’s voting precincts reporting at 11:15 p.m. on Election Night, Vance was beating Ryan 53.63 percent to 46.37 percent and NBC News called the race for the Republican. Vance thus secured a key victory for his party’s effort to retake the Senate majority. The win by the attorney, author and venture capitalist also boosts the wing of the GOP most favorable toward former President Donald Trump who enthusiastically endorsed Vance earlier this year.

With 58.27 percent of the state’s 8,933 voting precincts reporting at 10 p.m. on Election Day, Vance was beating Ryan 53.4 percent to 46.6 percent. The Republican thus appeared to secure a key victory for his party’s effort to retake the Senate majority. The projected win by the attorney, author and venture capitalist also boosts the wing of the GOP most favorable toward former President Donald Trump who enthusiastically endorsed Vance earlier this year.

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Ryan Portrays Ohio Campaign as a Dead Heat but Major Pollsters See Vance Pulling Away

With mere hours to go before the 2022 midterm election, polls are showing Ohio Republican Senate candidate J.D. Vance blow past his Democratic rival Tim Ryan, even as Ryan still claims the race is a “dead heat.” 

In a late Sunday night Twitter post, Ryan cites a survey result showing both candidates with 46 percent support among voters. 

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Ohioans Ready for Election Day as Candidates Make Final Push

With the midterm election less than a week away Ohio voters are going to decide who they want in Congress, the governor’s mansion, and the Ohio Supreme Court and will vote on two major ballot issues.

With the large ballot at hand here is a breakdown of who is running for election and what position they are running for.

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Cygnal Ohio Poll Shows Vance and DeWine Getting Bigger Leads

A poll released this weekend by the data company Cygnal shows Ohio Republican candidates for governor and U.S. Senate widening their leads against their Democratic opponents. 

The survey of 1,776 likely voters shows J.D. Vance, the author, attorney and venture capitalist running to succeed retiring Republican Senator Rob Portman, with a 4.6-percent lead over Democratic Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH-13). Among those polled, 9.2 percent said they were undecided. 

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Ohio Senator Portman Urges Additional Ukraine Funding to Prosecute War Crimes

U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) this week urged allocation of additional funding to support Ukraine as it prepares to prosecute alleged war crimes committed by Russian military personnel. 

The senator said his view of the need for more aid was informed through discussions he and Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) had with Prosecutor General Andriy Kostin on Wednesday concerning how America can help its ally to pursue war-crime cases against enemy soldiers. Portman and Durbin co-chair the Senate Ukraine Caucus. 

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Biden in Ohio: ‘Bury’ the ‘Rust Belt’

Speaking on Friday at the groundbreaking of Intel’s new semiconductor factory in Licking County, Ohio, President Joe Biden said that “it’s time to bury the label ‘rust belt…’” when describing the region in which he stood.

The ‘rust belt’ is a term often used to denote an area extending from western New York through the midwest that saw heavy industrial activity from the late 19th century to the mid-20th century, particularly concerning steel production and automobile manufacturing. The region suffered significant economic decline by the late 20th century and many communities therein have struggled since.

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Ohio GOP Congressional Delegation Wants Garland and Wray to Explain Mar-a-Lago Search

Republican members of Ohio’s congressional delegation reacted with mistrust that the federal government had sufficient cause to conduct its surprise search of former President Donald Trump’s home at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, FL earlier this week.

The former president himself has characterized the move as “prosecutorial misconduct” by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Justice to unfairly target President Joe Biden’s most high-profile adversary. Sources with knowledge of the event told the press that agents intended to gather evidence regarding whether Trump brought classified documents from the White House to his Palm Beach residence.

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China Tried to Plant Spies Inside the Federal Reserve and Kidnap Economist, Congress Finds

China has carried out a sustained, decade-long economic espionage operation to infiltrate the U.S. Federal Reserve, according to a report released Tuesday by the Republican staff of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

Chinese operatives have employed both bribery and coercion to garner influence with employees of the Federal Reserve system in attempts to get them to provide sensitive information about the U.S. economy to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the report shows. At least 13 individuals across eight of the Fed’s 12 locations were identified as persons of interest in the report for having ties with Chinese government institutions and talent recruitment programs.

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Ohio Senator Advocates Policy Changes in Wake of Inflation Report

In response to this week’s news of the consumer price index rising to 9.1%, Republican U.S. Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio gave a blistering summation and offered direction to the Biden administration.

Portman said numbers provided for Ohio indicate residents are spending an additional $8,300 a year on energy needs, food and clothing. Jonathan Church at the Bureau of Labor Statistics, contacted by The Center Square, responded in an email for response to getting state-specific index numbers, “The CPI program does not produce state-level indexes.”

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Commentary: America Needs a Red Flag Law For Senile Senators

America’s geriatric senators increasingly represent a threat to themselves and to others. Take Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) for example. She has filed paperwork to run again in 2024, despite the fact she turns 90 next year and associates say she can’t hold a coherent conversation or remember the names of close colleagues.

This is a woman who has the power to vote to send Americans to war. Just this past spring, she helped pass legislation that sent billions of dollars in military aid to Ukraine, a country currently at war with a nuclear power. America’s senators have enormous power to harm the country. They have access not just to firearms but to the world’s most powerful military force and even nuclear weapons.

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Ohio’s Portman Is Among Senators Backing Gun Control Deal

On Sunday, twenty U.S. senators, including Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH), announced they arrived at a proposal containing gun control and other measures they believe will curb violence in America.

The emerging legislation comes as pressure mounts on lawmakers to act in response to mass shootings like the recent ones in Buffalo, NY and Uvalde, TX. 

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The 12 Pivotal Primary Races of 2022

As the midterm elections approach, a number of important party primary races have yet to determine a nominee.

Many of the races still don’t have a clear frontrunner, despite fast-approaching election dates and millions of dollars spent, increasing the importance of every decision made until voting begins.

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Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework Fails to Advance in the Senate

US Capitol Infrastructure

Senate Republicans rejected an effort Wednesday to begin debate on the bipartisan infrastructure deal endorsed by President Joe Biden, saying that the vote came too early and that the bill was not yet finalized.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer scheduled the procedural vote in an attempt to begin debate on the package, but after filing cloture on Monday Republicans came out against it on the grounds that the deal had yet to be put into text and that senators were still finalizing how the plan would be financed. The bill failed 49-51, with Schumer voting no so that he can bring it up again in the coming days.

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Ohio Businessman Mike Gibbons Joins U.S. Senate Race

Mike Gibbons

Cleveland businessman and 2018 U.S. Senate candidate Mike Gibbons has officially entered the 2022 Senate race.

In his announcement, Gibbons stated that he can help others achieve their American Dream, because he did that for himself. He added that he’s never been a career politician. Instead, he described his journey as a self-made businessman who spent over 30 years helping local Ohio companies grow.

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Former State Rep Who Brought Impeachment Against DeWine Announces Run for Ohio GOP Chair

Friday, former Ohio lawmaker John Becker, who represented Ohioans from House District 65 between 2013-2020, announced his candidacy for Chairman of the Ohio Republican Party (ORP).

The top spot in the Ohio GOP is open after former Chairwoman Jane Timken announced her resignation on February 5 to run for the U.S. Senate.

The Southwestern Ohio Republican declared his candidacy in a letter to the ORP State Central Committee that contained his resume.

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Ohio Republican Senator Does Not Support Group That Plans to Challenge Election Results

Ohio Republican Sen. Rob Portman said Monday he will vote to certify the president elections when Congress meets in joint session Wednesday, saying he does not support a group of Republican senators who plan to challenge the results.

The group of 11 senators it will reject electors from disputed states and has called for a commission to hold an emergency 10-day audit of the election returns from those states. They also want the disputed states to hold a special legislative session to certify votes in a manner consistent with the findings of the commission’s audit.

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Ohio Senators Voted Along Party Lines in the Impeachment Trial

  Ohio Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman announced their decision on why they voted the way they did during Wednesday’s historic Senate impeachment vote. As expected, these senators’ decisions went along party lines. Brown, a Democrat, said “yes” to articles of impeachment, and Portman, a Republican, said “no” to…

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Rep. Jim Jordan Raised $1.4 Million in Fourth Quarter After Taking Role in Trump’s Defense

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH-04) significantly outraised many of his colleagues in Ohio’s congressional delegation during the final quarter of 2019, including both of the state’s U.S. senators.

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Justice Department Awards $6 Million to Combat Opioid Crisis in Southern Ohio

The U.S. Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs announced more than $333 million in awards Friday to help communities affected by the opioid crisis, including $6.1 million for public safety and health professionals in southern Ohio.

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$2 Billion Military Sale to Taiwan Good News for Lima, Ohio

  The U.S. State Department recently approved the sale of 108 M1A2T Abrams Tanks, manufactured in Ohio, to the Taiwanese government. The sale comes as part of a $2 billion Foreign Military Sale to Taiwan, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in a press release. Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) praised…

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Republican Sen. Rob Portman Calls Trump Comments ‘Divisive’ and ‘Wrong’

  Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) has been relatively quiet on the drama surrounding “the squad” on Capitol Hill, but he was finally reached for comment Monday by The Cincinnati Enquirer. “That’s not something I would say, and I think it’s divisive, unnecessary, and wrong,” Portman told the outlet in a brief…

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Sherrod Brown Calls on Labor Secretary Alex Acosta to Resign Over Epstein Plea Deal

  Sen. Sherrod Brown joined his fellow Democrats in calling on Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta to resign over his involvement in a 2007 plea deal for multimillionaire and registered sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. Epstein was arrested Saturday night in New Jersey and charged Monday with operating a sex trafficking ring…

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Ohio Lawmakers Call for Expanding Financial Aid Access for Technical Education Programs

  Ohio Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH-16) introduced a bill Wednesday that would expand access to financial aid for technical education programs, while Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) is sponsoring the legislation in the Senate. According to a press release from Gonzalez’s office, the Jumpstart Our Businesses By Supporting Students (JOBS) Act…

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Ohio Strong Action Has Vision for Trump in 2020 and Beyond

  COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio Strong Action, a super PAC, is preparing for the 2020 election. The organization, chaired by former U.S. Senate candidate Mike Gibbons, hosted the Ohio Strong Action 202o Vision Summit in Columbus on Tuesday. The purpose of the summit was to discuss “plans and the vision…

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DeWine Asks Trump for Federal Assistance in Response to Tornadoes

  Gov. Mike DeWine sent a letter to President Donald Trump Tuesday requesting that he issue a Presidential Disaster Declaration and provide federal assistance for the 10 counties devastated by recent tornadoes in Ohio. “These tornadoes resulted in a disaster of such severity and magnitude that effective response is beyond…

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Three Ohio Democrats Vote in Favor of Bill Legalizing ‘Religious Discrimination’

  Three members of Ohio’s congressional delegation voted in favor of the Equality Act, an expansive bill focused on civil rights for LGBT people. The mainstream media described the legislation, a top priority of House Democrats, as one that will prohibit discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation or gender…

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Senator Portman Wears ‘Otto’ T-Shirt in South Korea Visit in Remembrance of Ohio Native

Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) joined a bipartisan congressional trip to South Korea this week to discuss trade between the U.S. and South Korea as well as the ongoing nuclear negotiations with North Korea. During a visit to the demilitarized zone between South Korea and North Korea, Portman sported an “Otto”…

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Portman Resists Lindsey Graham’s Call for New Special Counsel to Investigate FBI

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and other Republicans are calling for an investigation, and possibly the appointment of a new special counsel, into the FBI surveillance of the Trump campaign. Graham told reporters on Monday that he wants to investigate the surveillance warrants obtained by the FBI against Carter Page, an…

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Portman and Brown Join Forces to Solve Pension Crisis

Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) have introduced a bipartisan bill aimed at giving Ohio workers and retirees a seat at the table when it comes to solving the nation’s looming pension crisis. As The Ohio Star previously reported, an estimated six million retirees and four million workers…

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Battleground State Report: The Republican ‘Usual Suspects’ Veer Left on National Emergency Vote Abandoning President Trump

On Friday’s Battleground State Report with Steve Gill, Michael Patrick Leahy, and Doug Kellett – a one hour radio show from Star News Digital Media in the early stages of a national weekend syndication roll-out-the three men discussed how the “usual suspects” of the Republican party have veered left on their vote on…

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Ohio’s Republican Senator Rob Portman Joins Senate Democrats in Voting Against Trump’s National Emergency Declaration

Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) and 11 of his Republican colleagues joined Senate Democrats Thursday in voting against President Donald Trump’s national emergency declaration. In a 59-41 vote, the Senate passed a bill that would terminate Trump’s emergency declaration, though the president has already said he will veto the resolution. Portman…

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Christian Family Values Organization Calls for Ohioans to Share Their Displeasure With Sen. Sherrod Brown for Voting Against Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Act

A Christian pro-family organization is calling for Ohioans to share their displeasure with U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), who voted against a bill to protect babies born after a botched abortion. Citizens for Community Values’ website says of the organization, “As Ohio’s Family Policy Council, Citizens for Community Values seeks…

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Republican Senators Introduce Legislation That Would ‘Permanently Prevent’ Government Shutdowns

by Henry Rodgers   A group of Republican Senators introduced legislation Friday that would permanently prevent the federal government from ever shutting down. Ohio Republican Sen. Rob Portman, Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley, Montana Sen. Steve Daines, Georgia Sen. Johnny Isakson, Wyoming Sen. Mike Enzi, Wyoming Sen. John Barrasso, Idaho…

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Ohio Republican Warns Trump Against Cutting General Motors Subsidies

President Donald Trump recently tweeted that his administration is looking at “cutting all” subsidies for General Motors (GM) after it announced plant closures across the country, but Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) is advising the president against doing so. “Very disappointed with General Motors and their CEO, Mary Barra, for closing…

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Ohio Lawmakers Put Trump in the Hot Seat After GM’s ‘Disastrous Decision’

Ohio’s lawmakers are turning up the heat on President Donald Trump after General Motors announced Monday that it will be halting production at five facilities across North America, one in Lordstown. In what one politician is calling “Black Monday,” General Motors plans to stop production of three of its Chevrolet…

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