Hillary Clinton urges Tim Ryan to run for Ohio Senate seat

Former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonBiden flexes presidential muscle on campaign trail with Virginia's McAuliffe Shontel Brown gaining ground against Nina Turner in Ohio: poll Biden hits trail for McAuliffe in test of his political brand MORE urged Rep. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) RyanSix takeaways: What the FEC reports tell us about the midterm elections Schumer, Tim Scott lead as Senate fundraising pace heats up Here's what Congress is reading at the beach this summer MORE (D) to run for the Ohio Senate seat being vacated when current Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanSunday shows preview: Bipartisan infrastructure talks drag on; Democrats plow ahead with Jan. 6 probe Key Biden ally OK with dropping transit from infrastructure package Frustration builds as infrastructure talks drag MORE (R) retires at the end of his term. 

"Rep. Tim Ryan is 'seriously considering' running for U.S. Senate in 2022," tweeted Kathy DiCristofaro, a Democratic National Committee member. "Ohio needs leaders like @TimRyan to fight for working people. I’m all In!" 

Clinton, the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, chimed in with a tweet of her own, saying, "You’re right, Kathy!" 

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Portman announced earlier this month that he would retire at the end of his current term, which ends this year. Ryan has said he is "looking seriously" at the possibility of running for the seat.

“I’m overwhelmed by supporters who are reaching out to encourage me to run for Senate. I haven’t made a decision yet but I’m looking seriously at it,” Ryan, who ran for president in 2020, said in a tweet on Jan. 25. “Ohio deserves leaders who fight for working people.”

Democrats are hoping to flip the seat in the tightly controlled upper chamber. They were able to gain enough Senate seats in the November election to gain control of the chamber with a 50-50 split while holding the tie-breaking vote with Vice President Harris.

Ryan is seen as a moderate candidate in a state that has moved to the right since the end of former President Obama's term. Former President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump hails Arizona Senate for audit at Phoenix rally, slams governor Arkansas governor says it's 'disappointing' vaccinations have become 'political' Watch live: Trump attends rally in Phoenix MORE won Ohio handily in both 2016 and 2020.