Democrats hope for morale boost in Ohio special election, but GOP isn’t worried


“If a Democrat had a chance to make a good impression, it would be a Democrat like her,” said Herb Asher, professor emeritus of political science at Ohio State University. The National Democrats would likely take such an outcome as a sign that they can reverse the historic trends working against them midway through 2022, he added.

“I still think it’s a long way off, but if they could win, what a statement for Democrats and what a morale booster,” Asher said.

An Emerson College poll from Oct. 14-16, however, found Carey leading Russo by 11 points, 50% to 39%, among likely voters in the district. The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.6 points.

Republicans expect the race to confirm that independent voters were not stimulated by President Joe Biden’s platform and that the endorsement of former President Donald Trump, which Carey obtained in June, still counts for their base. Trump won the district by 14 points last fall, according to calculations by the Daily Kos Elections.

Democrat Allison Russo nearly matched Carey in fundraising in the special election for Ohio’s 15th District. (Courtesy of Russo for Congress)

“I agree Allison Russo is a good candidate, but Mike Carey is also a good candidate,” said Stivers, who resigned in May to lead the state Chamber of Commerce. He said Carey demonstrated his discipline – and the power of Trump’s endorsement – when he won the GOP primary on August 3. Carey got 37% of the vote in an 11-person group that included several better-known rivals, including the state lawmaker Stivers had endorsed.

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