Showdown Over Leadership Of Ohio Republican Party Set For Friday

Jan 5, 2017

Friday’s vote for chair of the Ohio Republican Party will be the biggest meeting for the party’s 66-member state central committee in several years. And both candidates say they have the votes to win.

Chairman Matt Borges voted for Donald Trump, but he had some well publicized concerns and even a feud with Trump’s Ohio campaign team, which he hinted at during the Impact Ohio conference two days after Trump won. “You may have read something about my decision to vote for him or not. That was….I think Mr. Trump might have read that too.”

There were those in the party who had serious concerns about the lack of full-throated endorsement for Trump once he became the nominee. Stark County GOP vice chair Jane Timken says that’s why she’s challenging Borges. She says she has great respect for him, but a change must be made after Trump’s win. “There was not unwavering support for the presidential nominee. That’s caused some difficulties for the Ohio Republican Party and our national party.”

Timken says she has the support of Trump, along with nearly half of the state’s county party chairs. Borges has the backing of more than a hundred officeholders and leaders, including Gov. John Kasich, who helped him unseat former chair Kevin DeWine in 2012.