Countdown To Election Day: The Lie At The Center of Congressman Renacci’s Campaign
October 28, 2018
As the clock winds down to Election Day, we’re taking a look back at the lowlights of Congressman Jim Renacci’s Senate bid – a campaign that’s been defined by embarrassing stories, despicable lows, and complaints from Republicans that Renacci never “even picked up the towel.”
Today we’re taking a look at the lie at the center of Congressman Renacci’s campaign – the timing of his support of President Trump.
We’re heading down the homestretch to Election Day, so be sure to continue following along over the next nine days as we count down to the end of Congressman Renacci’s pathetic political career.
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- However, there does not appear to be any record of Renacci publicly backing Trump until after he clinched the nomination. To the contrary, there are examples of Renacci publicly professing his neutrality, while also suggesting that he’d prefer a governor and, at times, criticizing Trump’s rhetoric.
- “No, I actually stayed out of it,” Renacci, when asked by Fox News commentator Juan Williams if he had supported Kasich during the primaries, responded during a July 2016 interview at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. “I really am a believer that we needed to see the party make this decision. I was a business guy for 28 years. I’ve only been in Congress five and a half years. I started to realize that the people are frustrated — I’m frustrated, they’re frustrated; let’s see who they decide to pick. And clearly they wanted an outsider.”
- On Monday, Renacci’s team disputed any suggestion that he hadn’t endorsed Trump in the primaries. The Senate campaign asserted that Renacci offered the endorsement during a private meeting before Trump’s Cleveland rally March 12, 2016 — three days before the Ohio primary. As evidence of the endorsement, the campaign cited a four-second clip from Trump’s remarks, in which Trump doesn’t mention Renacci’s name.
- But Renacci never formally announced an endorsement. A local newspaper report about his appearance at a Republican function hours after Trump’s Cleveland rally noted that Renacci “didn’t surprise the audience with a presidential endorsement during his remarks.”
- In January 2016, the Canton Repository reported that Renacci had told its editorial board that he had no immediate plans to endorse anyone but that his ideal candidate was someone with executive experience in government, like a governor. He also threw a jab at Trump.
- “I’m a firm believer that we need to find a presidential candidate that wants to work with both sides,” Renacci told the newspaper. “You can’t start by calling people stupid, like Trump does. And you can’t start by saying your biggest enemy is the Republican Party, like Hillary Clinton.”
- In March, two weeks before the Ohio primary — a major Trump vs. Kasich battle that Kasich won — Renacci was noncommittal: “As I’ve said before, I will support whoever comes through the nomination process,” he told the Repository. And in May, after Kasich ended his campaign, Renacci issued this perfunctory statement to the Columbus Dispatch: “The electorate has spoken and Donald Trump is the presumptive nominee. I will support the Republican nominee.”
- It wasn’t until the Cleveland convention, where Renacci had a visible role, that he emerged as a vocal Trump supporter.
Read the full story here.