Hillbilly Goes To Washington

J.D. Vance vanquishes Tim Ryan in Ohio Senate race

JD Vance
JD Vance / Getty Images
November 9, 2022

Rep. Tim Ryan fell to his Republican rival J.D. Vance by roughly the same margin as President Joe Biden in 2020.

The result comes after myriad journalists and Democratic consultants characterized Ryan's candidacy as a way to reclaim the Rust Belt from Republican control. But Ryan ultimately could not overcome his record, which included voting with Biden 100 percent of the time when the president's approval rating is at 36 percent in Ohio.

Outlets like the Wall Street Journal to The New Yorker claimed Ryan's campaign offered a model for Democrats to run in red states. On Nov. 6, the Huffington Post declared "Win or Lose, Tim Ryan Is The Future of Democratic Senate Campaigns."

Vance hammered Ryan over his record for months on Ohio's airwaves. The Washington Free Beacon extensively covered Ryan's radical history, which included support for banning gas cars, promoting Medicare for All, and agreeing to open a congressional investigation into whether the federal government created HIV in order to kill black people.

"JD’s candidacy has been misunderstood and underrated by a national media echo chamber that’s simply out of touch with voters," said Luke Thompson, who ran a pro-Vance political action committee. "We’re seeing a new generation of Republican leaders coming into office today. It’s a great day for our party."

Aside from his far-left voting record, Ryan's time in Congress did not amount to much. Over the course of his nearly 20 years in office, Ryan only passed five bills. Of those laws, three of them were to rename federal buildings, including a post office in Tallmadge, Ohio. A fourth bill transferred the ownership of a Ravenna, Ohio, building from the federal government to the Ohio government.

Ryan also touted endorsements from alleged Republicans, including a former staffer for former president George W. Bush who worked in former president Barack Obama's administration.

Although Ryan targeted white working class voters, they remained skeptical of his candidacy for the entire race.

This post was originally published on Nov. 8 at 11:10 p.m.