The Republican Party was dealt a little blow earlier this week when a potential GOP nominee for a Senate seat in Ohio decided that he won’t seek a spot in the upper chamber.
On Tuesday, Warren Davidson from Ohio, who currently serves in the House of Representatives, said that he’d be running for re-election to the House rather than trying to move up to the Senate for the 2024 election. Davidson has been seen as a solid challenger to incumbent Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown, who himself will be looking to win re-election next year.
Davidson announced this decision through a note he sent to his supporters. In that note, he said that a bid for the Senate would prevent him from continuing his work in the House effectively.
Even though he was “truly tempted” to seek a seat on the Senate, Davidson said he believed his best work could be done in the House, where he serves on the House Freedom Caucus.
In his note, Davidson wrote:
“Running for Senate would effectively take me out of the fight in the House for 1.5 years to spend the vast majority of my time raising money. Although time spent with constituents in Ohio is the truest joy of the work, a very narrow majority in the House of Representatives means my vote will be essential on any bill that breaks on party lines – important issues.”
Davidson is pointing to a very real fact in this part of his statement – that running for Senate takes a lot of time, and a lot of money. And if he were to put his all into running for that seat, he would need to spend even more time than he already does campaigning around Ohio.
While that certainly puts him front and center with the people who he represents, it would also take him away from Washington, D.C., where he needs to be in person if he wants to vote on any bills that come to the House floor. Since the House no longer allows proxy voting, members who are absent from the House floor aren’t allowed to vote on bills.
With the GOP majority being so slim, even one absent member of the caucus could be the difference between a party-line vote passing or failing.
Davidson didn’t let the opportunity pass to express his positive outlook for Republicans in next year’s Ohio Senate race. He wrote:
“I am confident that Ohio’s voters are onto Sherrod Brown and will send him home. I shall always wonder if it would have been me, but it won’t. Instead, I will continue to defend freedom from Ohio’s 8th District and seek re-election in 2024.”
Davidson has been serving in the House since back in 2016. That year, he was elected through a special election to replace the former Speaker of the House, John Boehner. His district is just outside of Cincinnati.
Thus far, there are two Republicans who have announced bids to challenge Brown for his Senate seat – businessman Bernie Moreno and state Senator Matt Dolan, the latter of whom lost in the 2022 GOP primary to JD Vance, who is currently on the Senate.
It’s also widely expected that Ohio’s secretary of state, Frank LaRose, will announce his candidacy in the near future.