GOP members of Congress in Ohio raise more than Democrats in first quarter

Ohio’s members of Congress amassed $3.35 million worth of campaign contributions during the first three months of 2019, with Republican incumbents on average raising far more than Democrats in the delegation, according to new campaign finance reports.

The 12 Republicans in the delegation raised an average of $249,377, according to an analysis of quarterly reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.

While Democratic Reps. Joyce Beatty of the Columbus area, Tim Ryan of Niles, Marcy Kaptur of Toledo and Marcia Fudge of Cleveland raised an average of $90,443 between Jan. 1 and March 31 of this year, the report said.

Among local lawmakers, Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Urbana, raised the most money during the quarter.

Jordan raised $484,198 last quarter and had $863,683 in the bank as of March 31. The bulk of his money was from individuals who do not live in Ohio, but he also accepted donations from the Akron-based First Energy PAC, the General Dynamics Corporation PAC and the Pfizer Inc. PAC.

Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, raised $210,484 while Rep. Warren Davidson, R-Troy, raised $86,764.

Turner’s campaign had $232,565 in the bank while Davidson had $237,598 to spend.

Warren County-area Congressman Steve Chabot, R-Cincinnati, raised $187,676 last quarter and had $158,829 in the bank.

Turner, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, received campaign contributions from donors including some in the Defense industry, including Honeywell International PAC, the Lockheed Martin Corporation Employees PAC and the L3 Technologies Inc. PAC.

Davidson, a member of the House Financial Services Committee, received contributions from groups including the Liberty Mutual Insurance Company PAC, the American Bankers Association PAC and the Mortgage Bankers Association PAC.

Chabot, the ranking Republican on the House Small Business Committee, received contributions from the conservative Club for Growth, the Independent Community Bankers PAC, and the Employees of Northrop Grumman Corp. PAC.

Of all Ohio lawmakers, Columbus-area Rep. Steve Stivers, R-Upper Arlington, raised the most last quarter, raising $559,024. Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Cleveland, raised the least, amassing just $9,044.

Members get money from GM despite plant closure

Ohio lawmakers took $11,000 this year from the political action committee affiliated with General Motors, even as the company was shutting down its Lordstown plant, putting 1,400 people out of work.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, U.S. Reps. Joyce Beatty, Anthony Gonzalez, Troy Balderson and Marcia Fudge and a leadership PAC affiliated with Sen. Rob Portman received contributions in February and March of this year, according to Federal Election Commission reports filed by the General Motors PAC. The Lordstown plant stopped production on the Chevrolet Cruze on March 6.

The bulk of the contributions - $6,000 – came in March, either on March 28 or March 18, depending on the donation. The GM PAC gave $1,000 to Gonzalez, Balderson and DeWine and $1,500 to Fudge and Beatty, according to their report. The PAC gave $5,000 to PortPac – which stands for Promoting Our Republican Team – on Feb. 28. It gave to no Ohioans in January.

“GM has numerous facilities in Ohio and has consistently supported members on both sides of the aisle. Rob will continue to push GM to do the right thing by its workers at Lordstown and bring a new vehicle to the facility,” said Emmalee Kalmbach, a spokeswoman for Portman.

Tim Lolli, chief of staff for Gonzalez, said Gonzalez met with GM after the closure to push back on the decision to close the plant. Gonzalez, he said, “highlighted the economic benefits to the region and the desire for GM to bring another line to the facility rather than closing it.”

“If GM still wishes to support Gonzalez for Congress despite his serious concerns, they are welcome to do so,” he said. “At the end of the day, it is important we work together to solve our nation’s problems and bolster Northeast Ohio’s economy. Rep. Gonzalez will sit down at the table with anyone who shares that goal.”

Spokespeople for Balderson, Beatty, Fudge and DeWine were either unavailable for comment or declined to comment.

A GM spokeswoman said the company “supports the election of U.S. federal and state candidates who foster sound business policies.”

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