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Rep. Jim Jordan says he won’t run for Senate in 2022 after Sen. Rob Portman announces retirement

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In the wake of Ohio Sen. Rob Portman (R) announcing that he would not seek reelection in 2022, Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan (R) has dispelled rumors that he plans to run for the position.

Jordan “is solely focused on representing the great people of Ohio’s Fourth District, and will not be running to fill the seat of retiring Senator Rob Portman,” a spokesperson for his office told Cleveland.com Thursday.

“Mr. Jordan believes at this time he is better suited to represent Ohioans in the House of Representatives, where as the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee, he can advance an America first agenda, promote conservative values, and hold big government accountable,” the spokesperson added.

This statement puts to rests rumors and speculation that Jordan, a staunch ally of former President Donald Trump, would try to run for Portman’s seat, someone who has generally been seen as part of the Republican establishment and not part of the Trump wing of the GOP. Portman was first elected in 2010 and reelected in 2016.

Ever since former President Barack Obama won Ohio in 2008 and 2012, the Buckeye State has been shifting rightward, with Trump winning the state in 2016 and 2020. It should be noted that the only statewide Democrat is Sen. Sherrod Brown.

In his retirement announcement, Portman pointed to the increasing partisan gridlock at the national level as the country moves further to the political extremes.

“We live in an increasingly polarized country where members of both parties are being pushed further to the right and further to the left, and that means too few people who are actively looking to find common ground,” he said.

With Ohio still considered a battleground state and the U.S. Senate split 50-50, the 2022 Senate race in Ohio will very likely be a contentious one and will help determine which of the two major parties control the upper chamber for at least until 2024.

With Jordan out of the picture, other Ohio GOP congressmen have reportedly expressed interest in running, according to The Hill—such as Reps. Reps. Mike Turner, Steve Stivers, Brad Wenstrup and David Joyce.

Likewise, there are some Democrats whom The Hill reports have not ruled out a 2022 Senate run, most notably Reps. Tim Ryan and Joyce Beatty.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Elections

CNN announces controversial presidential debate rules obviously intended to benefit Biden

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CNN announced its several presidential debate rules over the weekend sparking controversy. The rules will govern the upcoming debate between former President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden on June 27. A

After Trump publicly stated he would debate the president “any time and any where” the Biden campaign agreed to a total of two debates that would be closely regulated. Not only did the administration demand a ban on audiences, it also approved CNN’s Jake Tapper and Dana Bash as its moderators. Breitbart reports Tapper is one of Trump’s sharpest critics.

CNN announced its own additional parameters on Saturday, which likely were done in partnership with the White House:

  • Two commercial breaks (Likely to benefit Biden)
  • Campaign staff will not be able to interact with their candidate during the break
  • No opening statements, two-minute closing statements
  • Two-minute answer shot clock, one minute for rebuttals
  • Mics will be muted “except for the candidate whose turn it is to speak” (Likely to benefit Biden)

CNN reported its rules:

The 90-minute debate will include two commercial breaks, according to the network, and campaign staff may not interact with their candidate during that time. Both candidates agreed to appear at a uniform podium, and their podium positions will be determined by a coin flip.

Microphones will be muted throughout the debate except for the candidate whose turn it is to speak. While no props or pre-written notes will be allowed on the stage, candidates will be given a pen, a pad of paper and a bottle of water.

Some aspects of the debate – including the absence of a studio audience – will be a departure from previous debates. But, as in the past, the moderators “will use all tools at their disposal to enforce timing and ensure a civilized discussion,” according to the network.

Breitbart reports that the President is planning to spend about a week preparing to debate Trump who has also requested Biden receive a drug test before the debates. The White House did not respond in May as to whether Biden intends to use performance-enhancing drugs in preparation for the presidential debates.

Ron Klain, Biden’s former chief of staff who is going on vacation to help Biden prepare for the debates, did not respond to Politico Playbook’s request for comment about “whether any illegal substances are used as part of Klain’s debate prep.”

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