Cleveland businessman and 2018 Ohio Republican Senate candidate Mike Gibbons announced plans to make a run for the Ohio Senate seat currently occupied by GOP Sen. Rob Portman, who will be retiring. This 2022 race is shaping up to become the most competitive Republican primary in the country.
Gibbons released his announcement video to Fox News on Tuesday morning. He joins three other candidates including Jane Timken, a former state Republican Party chair, former state treasurer and former two-time Senate candidate Josh Mandel and Cleveland businessman and luxury auto dealership giant Bernie Moreno, according to Fox.
“I’m a businessman, not a politician. I’m blunt, plain spoken, and I tell it like it is,” Gibbons tells voters in the video below.
The pro-Trump conservative believes it’s time “to stand up to the cancel culture and the lies of those who seek to divide us. I believe that families matter. Churches matter. Neighborhoods and small towns matter. I believe that we need to secure our borders, stand for life, and defend our 2nd Amendment rights.”
“The left is working around the clock to destroy everything President Trump accomplished during his time in office… they’re counting on us to go away – to cower before the power of Washington, D.C., and their media enablers. But I’m not going anywhere. I’m ready for battle,” he said.
He has an impressive biography and emphasized the value of hardwork in achieving success. Gibbons “grew up in Parma, a working-class suburb of Cleveland. My father was a high school teacher and a wrestling coach. My grandfather was president of the laborers union.”
Strolling through the company’s Cleveland headquarters, Gibbons says, “I started my own business at the age of 37, working alone in a small office with just a phone and a desk.” He built this into a lucrative investment banking firm called Brown, Gibbons, Lang and Company.
He understands “that politicians don’t create jobs, businesses do. I know because I’ve done it.” Through his company, Gibbons said he’d “helped dozens of homegrown Ohio companies expand and add jobs, providing strategic and financial advice and much needed capital.”
“I’ve achieved financial success beyond my wildest imagination. I’ve achieved my American dream. Now I’m running for the U.S. Senate to make sure other people have the ability to achieve their American dream,” Gibbons concluded.
Fox reports that Gibbons will initially invest $5 million of his own money in his campaign. The media outlet indicated that several of Gibbon’s current and potential opponents can and likely will draw upon their own wealth to finance their campaigns.
Moreno, who has already declared his candidacy, could use his fortune to fund his campaign. Of the other two declared candidates, Mandel has $4.5 million remaining from previous campaigns and Timken has collected $2.1 million since launching her bid six weeks ago, according to Fox.
Additionally, “last month PayPal co-founder and billionaire venture capitalist Peter Thiel contributed $10 million of his own money into a super PAC that would support Vance if he runs.”
The natural candidate for the open Ohio seat would be the outspoken Rep. Jim Jordan. Almost as soon as Sen. Portman announced his retirement plans, however, Jordan said he had no plans to enter the race, a decision that surprised many Republicans.
On the other side of the aisle, current Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan is expected to run for the seat.
Republicans are hoping to take back the Senate in 2022 which means they need to pick up just one additional seat. They will be “defending 20 of the 34 seats up for grabs in 2022.”