Republican Gov. Mike DeWine has been projected the winner of Ohio gubernatorial primary Tuesday night, earning a majority of the vote and roughly doubling up Jim Renacci, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump.
Early returns had DeWine declared the projected winner with more than 50% of the vote to Renacci around 25%.
DeWine, a veteran politician who easily won the state’s top office four years ago, was facing a revolt in some corners of Ohio after enraging the GOP faithful with aggressive stay-at-home mandates, business shutdowns and curfews during the pandemic.
Despite calling himself “the most pro-life governor in Ohio history,” he has lost the backing of some anti-abortion and conservative groups.
Ohio Democrats face a bigger problem when picking their nominee for governor — they have not won a statewide nonjudicial race in nearly 16 years.
Their choice comes down to former Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley or former Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley, who would be the first woman in the state’s history to receive a major party’s backing for governor. Whaley holds a commanding early lead but no projected winner has been declared.
Whaley and Cranley, who have a friendship that goes back years, are aligned on many issues. Both have promised to protect abortion rights, promote social justice and fight political corruption.
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