WASHINGTON – “I will make that decision after these elections coming up in November.”
Ohio Senator Rob Portman (R) says he’s not ready to make up his mind about a possible run for president just yet.
He said he wants to see how the November midterm elections play out for his fellow Republican colleagues ahead of any possible announcement – saying he hopes the GOP takes back control of Congress.
“I think this place is dysfunctional, it’s broken, not working,” he said.
That’s why Portman says he’s motivated to reach for the White House, and he knows what he would want Congress to focus on if he were president.
“Getting the jobs back, which would mean tax reform and regulatory relief, and expanding exports and doing more on energy,” he said.
Portman, who is the chief fundraiser for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, has the connections and the know-how to raise enough cash for a presidential bid. But for now, he says he’s focused on being a good Ohio senator.
“Most of my colleagues’ think they want to run for president,” said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH). “If you start thinking too much about running for president, you can’t really do your job here, so I have no interest personally.”
However, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) thinks her democratic peer has what it takes.
“I think Sherrod Brown would be a good candidate from Ohio,” Kaptur said. “[He’s] on my side of the aisle. If then if the Republicans want to select either Senator Portman…I hear our governor might be in their mind’s eye.”
Though Portman’s Ohio colleagues might not be on board yet, an announcement might not be too far in the future. The Republican National Convention is set to take place in Cleveland in 2016 – giving him plenty of time to deliberate.