'Hillbilly Elegy' author in DC to meet with GOP about potential Senate run: report

'Hillbilly Elegy' author in DC to meet with GOP about potential Senate run: report
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J.D. Vance, the author of “Hillbilly Elegy,” is seriously considering a Senate run in Ohio and is meeting with Republicans in Washington this week to discuss a potential bid, according to BuzzFeed.

Vance had initially declined to run for Senate, but is reconsidering after top Senate candidate, Ohio state Treasurer Josh Mandel (R) dropped out of the race last week, citing his wife’s health.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMcConnell in talks with Mnuchin on next phase of coronavirus relief Pelosi: 'We shouldn't even be thinking' about reopening schools without federal aid The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Argentum - All eyes on Florida as daily COVID-19 cases hit 15K MORE (R-Ky.) reportedly talked with Vance on Monday about a potential bid.

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“The phone hasn’t stopped ringing since Friday,” said Jai Chabria, an adviser to Vance who traveled with him this week to Washington, told BuzzFeed. 

“The amount of support for J.D. Vance is incredible. People are starting to realize he has the best message to beat [Democratic Sen.] Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownSenate Dems request briefing on Russian bounty wire transfers On The Money: Mnuchin, Powell differ over how soon economy will recover | Millions fear eviction without more aid from Congress | IRS chief pledges to work on tax code's role in racial wealth disparities IRS chief pledges to work with Congress on examining tax code's role in racial wealth disparities MORE. J.D. is giving serious consideration toward this, because there are very serious people asking him to run.”

Mandel’s surprise exit has shaken up the race to unseat Brown, who’s served in the Senate since 2007 and has been a staple in Ohio politics for decades. President TrumpDonald John TrumpWayfair refutes QAnon-like conspiracy theory that it's trafficking children Stone rails against US justice system in first TV interview since Trump commuted his sentence Federal appeals court rules Trump admin can't withhold federal grants from California sanctuary cities MORE carried the Buckeye State by more than 8 points in 2016.

Businessman Mike Gibbons is now the only Republican contender running in the May 8 primary, with a filing deadline quickly approaching on Feb. 7. Gibbons has been releasing lists of local endorsements and announced that he would spend an additional $5 million for his campaign.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) has ruled out a Senate bid, but Rep. Jim RenacciJames (Jim) B. RenacciOhio is suddenly a 2020 battleground Democrats fear Ohio slipping further away in 2020 Medicare for All won't deliver what Democrats promise MORE (R-Ohio), who is currently running for governor, said he'd strongly consider running for Senate instead if Trump encourages him.