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Government & Politics
2018 was a big election year in Ohio. Republicans held onto all five statewide executive offices including governor and super majorities in both the Ohio House and Senate. But there were a few bright spots for Democrats, among them the reelection of U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown and the election of two Democrats to the Ohio Supreme Court.With election 2018 over, the focus now shifts to governing. Stay connected with the latest on politics, policies and people making the decisions at all levels affecting your lives.

Sherrod Brown Says 'No' to Vice Presdential Possibilities

Sherrod Brown
M.L. SCHULTZE
/
WKSU

Politics and governing aren’t always the same thing, but they certainly were this week. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze spoke with Ohio’s Democratic U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown about the aftermath of the Ohio primary and of President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee.

After Hillary Clinton convincingly won the Democratic primary in Ohio Tuesday, soft talk of Sen. Brown as her running mate got louder. But Brown  says the speculation should end.

“I have no interest. I’m flattered that anybody would talk about me as holding what I guess is the second highest job in the land. But I love this job. I want to continue to fight for manufacturing and help students deal with their oppressive student debt and I want to keep doing this job, so I have no interest.”

So would that be a “no” if offered?

“That would be a ‘no.” :26

The other winner Tuesday – in Ohio’s Republican primary – was Gov. John Kasich. But Donald Trump won all four of the other states – pending a potential recount in Missouri.

Brown maintains that overall, the Republican Party is heading in a different direction than the rest of the country.

“I wish John Kasich well. I appreciate that John Kasich implemented the Affordable Care Act’s expansion of Medicaid. But I also think this far-right politics that we see in the state legislature in Columbus and that we see from Donald Trump and Ted Cruz is not even close to carrying the rest of the country.” :18

Brown’s words were harsher for the GOP senators who are refusing to consider President Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court. Senate Republicans have repeatedly invoked what they call the Biden rule, referring to a speech now Vice President Biden gave as a U.S. senator in 1992. Biden maintained then that different standards should apply to Supreme Court vacancies “in the full throes of an election year.” 

Brown argues that’s out of context.

“Biden talks a lot. Biden made all kinds of statements but the difference is Biden was saying to the Supreme Court: ‘Don’t have somebody quit just so President Bush can nominate somebody as he goes out the door.” :13

Among those who oppose confirmation hearings is Ohio’s other Sen. Rob Portman.  He was not available for an interview. But in a statement, he repeated Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s insistence that – quote – “This is about the principle, not the person” and that the Senate should not take up any nomination until after the election.