All eyes were on the Republican primary race for the open Senate seat in Ohio on Tuesday, where Trump-endorsed J.D. Vance was up against former state treasurer Josh Mandel and state Sen. Matt Dolan, who were seen as the more establishment-friendly candidates.
For many, it was an early opportunity to dance on the grave of Donald Trump and his America First agenda. The New Yorker pondered whether Trump was “headed for a nightmare in Ohio” on Monday, and even the National Review seemed to anticipate Vance falling short, in part because of an anti-interventionist stance on Ukraine, saying if he loses “it will be a sign that his brand of populism simply isn’t as popular as he and many others imagined.”
Well, Vance didn’t lose and those who believed that Trump’s influence over the Republican Party would be tested got their answer. In fact, Vance won relatively easy, with the Associated Press calling the race Tuesday night. The Trump-backed Republican drew 32.2% of the vote, compared to 23.9% for Mandel and 23.3% for Dolan. He’ll now go up against U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, who prevailed in the Democratic primary, in November.
He’s up. He did it. On to the general. pic.twitter.com/x15uOfGGKv
— Asawin Suebsaeng (@swin24) May 4, 2022
And with that victory the anxiety of those fearing a Trump 2024 run jumped exponentially.
To their credit, many in the media gave Trump his due suggesting his late endorsement of Vance was the difference maker — at the same time, with “sleepy” President Joe Biden in office, you get the feeling that some in the media may actually miss the former president.
Here’s a quick sampling of responses to Vance’s big win from Twitter:
B) Trump spox: The power of President Trump’s endorsement is undeniable, his dominance over the Republican powerbrokers in D.C. cannot be understated, and the promise of this MAGA Movement will not just define the Midterms, but it will win for years to come.
— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) May 4, 2022
Trump endorsed the guy he privately calls “a handsome son of a bitch,” and that really late-in-the-game endorsement very likely put Vance over the top tonight in what became perhaps the absolute most bloodthirsty, Trump-cult primary in the country that clearly underscores…
— Asawin Suebsaeng (@swin24) May 4, 2022
Vance was toast two months ago. Trump endorsed him mid-April pic.twitter.com/oGcvcf1xx8
— Burgess Everett (@burgessev) May 4, 2022
NBC News projects J.D. Vance as winner of the Ohio Senate GOP primary.
Vance, jumping a good ~20% after Trump’s endorsement last month, to take the stage in Cincinnati ahead of his general election campaign against Democrat Tim Ryan. pic.twitter.com/k1b3N3ufFL
— Vaughn Hillyard (@VaughnHillyard) May 4, 2022
Tens of millions of RINO dollars spent to stop my man @JDVance1 in Ohio and they call it before 9 o’clock. The America First movement is alive and well people. Congrats JD, well done. pic.twitter.com/Yhu3LEHjQF
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) May 4, 2022
JD Vance explicitly denounced US involvement in Ukraine, opposed sending American dollars there, and emphasized domestic issues like immigration enforcement instead. His platform is, in important ways, a repudiation of the mainstream liberal *and* conservative consensus. https://t.co/Lkwu9gXOVQ
— Pedro L. Gonzalez (@emeriticus) May 4, 2022
*** JD Vance wins Ohio after Trump endorsement ***
The biggest question now is:
Who should Trump endorse in AZ primary?
— Jack Posobiec ☦️ (@JackPosobiec) May 4, 2022
Looks like people are calling it for @JDVance1. Excellent. His victory was an important step in taking back the GOP from a Beltway class that had come to fetishize abstractions and dogma at the cost of Americans’ livelihoods and cultural survival.
— David Reaboi, Late Republic Nonsense (@davereaboi) May 4, 2022
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