Turner giving the U.S. Senate race ‘a close look’

COLUMBUS — Longtime Miami Valley Congressman Mike Turner, R- Dayton, is announcing Monday that he is considering a run for the U.S. Senate.

In an interview with News Center 7, Turner said he is exploring a possible bid for the Senate now that incumbent Republican Senator Rob Portman has announced that he will not seek re-election in 2022.

Turner is releasing a campaign-style video that introduces himself and his political career to the rest of the state. He was first elected to the US House of Representatives in 2002. Before that, he served as Mayor of Dayton for eight years. His current district includes all of Montgomery and Greene Counties and part of Fayette County.

The Dayton native has never run statewide before and if he enters the race will face at least two other Republicans. Former State Treasurer Josh Mandel has run for the Senate before and is back again. Also, former Ohio Republican Party Chair Jane Timken has statewide contacts, although she has never run for elected office before. Both Mandel and Timken have already formally announced their candidacy. In the early going both Mandel and Timken have closely aligned their campaigns with the goals of former President Donald Trump, promising to continue his agenda. In his newly-released video, Turner uses a bit of a video of the former President talking about him at a rally in Dayton last year.

In an interview with News Center 7, Turner said “I’m getting substantial pressure to get into this race and we’re certainly taking a look at it. We’re looking at what’s best for Ohio. As I look to this race, I look to my record of service, my proven record of conservative leadership, and what I can bring to serve Ohio.”

Another Republican, author J.D. Vance, who has never run for elected office before, may also get into the race. Democratic candidates may include northeast Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan and former Ohio Health Director Dr. Amy Acton.

The Primary Election is just over a year away, with the filing deadline in early February 2022. If Turner commits to the Senate race, he would be walking away from a comfortable post in the House, although the shapes of House districts are due to change later this year with redistricting.