With its Republican governor implicated in scandal and a Republican member of its congressional delegation pleading guilty to corruption charges in connection to disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, Ohio is probably the most difficult state in the country for a Republican senator to wage a re-election campaign, which explains why Mike DeWine has been unable to close challenger Sherrod Brown's hefty lead in recent months. A handful of recent polls show DeWine, a two-term senator, running on average about 7 percentage points behind Brown, a seven-term congressman.
The Republican Party moved quickly today to deny a New York Times report that the GOP is pulling out of embattled Ohio Sen. Mike DeWine's re-election bid to focus on Senate races in which it faces better odds of winning, like those in Missouri, Tennessee, and possibly Virginia.
Asked about the fallout from theRep. Mark Foley scandal, Democratic Rep. Sherrod Brown's Senate campaign spokeswoman Joanna Kuebler says, "It's huge in Ohio—it's huge everywhere." Brown's campaign points out that the scandal may be especially potent in Ohio because the state is home to Boehner, who along with others in the House Republican leadership has come under fire for not acting earlier to address the E-mails from Foley to a former page.
Just days after Ohio Sen. Mike DeWine launched a TV ad accusing his Democratic challenger, Rep. Sherrod Brown, of "weakening America's security" and featuring images of a smoking World Trade Center on September 11, the Brown camp has struck back. "It's sad," says a narrator at the beginning of a response ad, which began appearing Tuesday and is paid for by the Ohio Democratic Party. "Mike DeWine exploiting images of 9/11 to smear Sherrod Brown."
Paul Hackett, the Iraq war vet whose brief U.S. Senate run in Ohio and messy withdrawal from the race attracted national attention earlier this year, yesterday endorsed his onetime rival for the Democratic nomination, Rep. Sherrod Brown.