Renacci, who announced he would challenge Democratic incumbent Sen. Sherrod Brown, told the Vindicator that he initially did not want to run for Senate and was running for governor.
But Trump’s staff convinced him otherwise and met with him five days after state Treasurer Josh Mandel dropped out of the race and a potential rematch against Brown.
“I had a lot of stipulations, and they met all of them,” Renacci said. “They agreed to be very supportive. I had seven or eight items required to make this switch.”
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Renacci did not say what his stipulations were, but he said the president and vice president will both be in Ohio campaigning for him “a lot over the next eight, nine months.”
“Sometimes leadership isn’t about what you want to do, but what you have to do,” he said and called Brown “the epitome of a career politician.”
“When you leave the private sector and come to Washington because you’re frustrated with the process, you don’t become a career politician,” he said.
But Ohio Democratic Party spokeswoman Lara Sisselman said Renacci was being “disingenuous.”
“Rep. Jim Renacci’s rhetoric is just as disingenuous as his attempts to pretend he isn’t a Washington insider who’s been in Congress for nearly a decade,” she said.