Ohioans Need Portman in Senate

Since 2010, when Ohioans by an overwhelming margin elected him to the U.S. Senate, Rob Portman has given them every reason to pat themselves on the back for making a wise choice. He has represented Buckeye State residents extremely well, making them his top priority in Washington.

Not all members of Congress do that.

On Nov. 8, voters should keep Portman in the Senate because they need both an advocate and a defender in Washington. They will need that more than ever if Hillary Clinton is elected president, as seems possible.

Portman has been a staunch champion of working men and women. He has fought against trade deals that sell out Ohio workers. He has done all in his power to enact federal programs to help those who have lost their jobs already, often as a result of government action or lack of it.

He has battled President Barack Obama’s war against coal and affordable electricity. Portman wants to safeguard the thousands of Ohioans whose jobs depend directly or indirectly on mining. But he also realizes that if more coal-fired power plants are idled, millions of Ohioans could be forced to pay higher electric bills.

Clinton has precisely that in mind.

She also favors limits on hydraulic fracturing of gas and oil wells. That is the very practice that brought the drilling boom to East Ohio, benefiting tens of thousands of people.

Portman’s opponent in the Nov. 8 election is former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, who was refused a second term after he wrecked the state budget, leaving his successor to close an $8 billion gap in it.

And Strickland, though claiming to be a friend to “the little guy,” supports Clinton wholeheartedly. His reaction to the war on coal was to sign on with a liberal group that backs Obama.

On many fronts, ranging from gun control to taxes, foreign policy to honesty in government, Americans will need defenders in the Senate if Clinton is elected president.

The Intelligencer endorses Portman and urges Ohioans to re-elect him because he can be relied upon to continue waging that battle.

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