Trump-Backed Candidate Wins Ohio Senate Primary

( – Bernie Moreno, the candidate who was backed by Trump in the Ohio Republican Senate primary, won the race on Tuesday, March 19th.

Moreno, a businessman with no prior political experience, beat out Ohio State Senator Matt Dolan, who was endorsed by Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, as well as Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose. Back in November 2023, LaRose was leading in the polls. However, an endorsement by Trump in mid-December led Moreno to surge in the polls. By early this year, Dolan had become the front runner. Trump, who appeared at the Buckeye Values PAC rally in Ohio on Saturday, March 16th, praised Moreno while attacking Dolan, leading to Moreno once again surging in the polls.

Ironically, though many people believe former President Trump hates immigrants, Moreno himself is an immigrant. He was born in Bogotá, Colombia, but emigrated to the United States with his parents when he was five. Moreno spoke of his desire to become an American citizen and integrate into American society.

Latinos are a major voting bloc in the US currently, and though traditionally as a group they have voted for Democrats, in recent years, they are beginning to lean more conservative. Nearly 20 million Latinos are expected to vote in November, and polls indicate that many are considering leaving the Democratic party. Biden and his Vice President, Kamala Harris, have been scrambling to win Latinos back, as they were critical to Biden’s victory in 2020. Biden has been airing ads on Spanish-speaking networks as well as giving interviews to platforms like Univision Radio, claiming “we are a nation of immigrants.”

Democrats in Ohio have been struggling in recent years. During the 2022 midterms, Republicans swept the Buckeye state, including taking over the attorney general, auditor, and treasurer positions.

Many viewed the Ohio Senate Primary as a proxy battle for traditional Republicanism against the Trump and MAGA movement. Moreno’s victory shows that the MAGA movement isn’t going away anytime soon.

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