Ohio Republicans Want Jim Tressel to Run For Senator

By D.J. Byrnes on January 10, 2018 at 7:11 pm
Senator Jim Tressel

Ohio Republican treasurer Josh Mandel ended his bid last week to unseat Democratic incumbent Senator Sherrod Brown in the Congressional midterm elections in November.

His exit left only Cleveland-area businessman Mike Gibbons, a first-time candidate, in the race.

Hillbilly Elegy author J.D. Vance is reportedly mulling a run in the wide-open race with Congressman Jim Renacci expected to end his run for governor and join the fracas on Thursday.

But one GOP insider thinks their party could do better than all three if only former Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel were interested in running.

From The Washington Examiner:

"He would be awesome, and he could win — but I'm not sure he would do it," said one GOP operative when asked for a candid assessment of a possible Tressel bid. "There's no one better we could get. He'd be a star."

The Buckeye brand is strong in Ohio, after all. Anthony Gonzalez, a former Tressel pupil, is using it to his advantage in his race for Ohio's 16th Congressional District.

"Anthony Gonzalez has a lot of people for him because of his Buckeye pedigree," said Mark Weaver, an Ohio-based GOP strategist. "In Ohio, particularly Central Ohio, you can never discount a Ohio State personality running for something."

If Tressel wants to run, he needs to file by Feb. 7th. 

He has yet to publicly express any desire to run, though he has donated to conservative candidates and causes in the past.