George Lang spent 14 years as a West Chester Twp. Trustee, where he’s had tremendous influence on the direction of the township. He hopes to make similar strides as a state lawmaker. NICK GRAHAM/FILE
Photo: Staff Writer
Photo: Staff Writer

Lang to run for Ohio Senate, creating three-way race in Republican primary

Lang is making his announcement today at the Harry T. Wilks Conference Center at Miami University Regionals in Hamilton.

“I want to take my platform to the Senate where I think it will resonate better,” Lang exclusively told the Journal-News. “And I think I have more of a chance of putting Ohio on a better track.”

Lang hopes to succeed Ohio Sen. Bill Coley, R-Liberty Twp., who cannot seek re-election because of term limits. Coley, who is running for a seat on the 12th District Court of Appeals, told the Journal-News he intends to serve the remainder of his Senate term.

Lang would face Ohio Rep. Candice Keller, R-Middletown, who is certified to be on the March 2020 primary ballot, and West Chester Twp. Lee Wong, who has pulled petitions to run for the seat.

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Lang said the race against Keller and Wong is “going to be a tough race.”

“Lee Wong is the hardest campaigner I know,” he said. “He has some difficulty in raising money, but he makes up for it in effort. He will knock on more doors, typically, than all other candidates in the county. And Candice has a very loyal base. So it’s going to be a battle.”

Lang said he can win by having a business-first approach. He said Ohio has had a bad track record in that area for the past 50 years

“(Former Ohio Gov.) Jim Rhodes was the last governor that put business first, and since he left we have come up with one tax after another, one regulation after another,” Lang said. “Depending on which survey you look at, Ohio is the fifth- or seventh-most left state today, and the number one reason they site is ‘better economic opportunity elsewhere.’”

Lang said his business-first approach worked for West Chester Twp., which he said is “the most business-friendly community in Ohio,” and he wants Ohio to have that moniker in the nation.

 

Lang was appointed to his House seat in 2017 before winning election in 2018. He raised nearly $250,000 in his 2018 Statehouse election bid. He touted his fundraising skills in his September 2017 speech when seeking the Butler County Republican Party’s recommendation to the Ohio House appointment.

“Two things that your state rep must be very good at: one is getting elected and, two, being able to raise funds,” he said to the GOP Central Committee members that live in the 52nd District.

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