A Key Vote on Healthcare, Ohio's Portman Remains Noncommittal at GOP Dinner Featuring VP Pence

Jul 24, 2017

Vice President Mike Pence and Ohio Senator Rob Portman wave to the crowd on stage during the state dinner.
Credit Karen Kasler / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

The Ohio Republican Party’s state dinner this weekend brought in hundreds of party faithful, and included two leaders with different perspectives on the Senate health care bill. And that puts the person who’ll actually be voting on it in a tough position. 

Sen. Rob Portman is undecided on the Republican bills to repeal the Affordable Care Act, something he touched on in his speech: 

“I’ve talked to a lot of you about that tonight, and half of you have told me one thing and half of you told me another thing,” Portman said.

Portman then introduced Vice President Mike Pence, who urged senators to pass the repeal.

Also at the reception before the dinner was Gov. John Kasich, who’s come out against the bill and what it would do to Medicaid expansion in Ohio. Three of the four candidates for governor also spoke. Jim Renacci, Jon Husted and Mike DeWine praised Pence but didn’t mention Kasich. Mary Taylor was scheduled to attend, but her spokesman says she was traveling and couldn’t make it.