Tags: Trump Administration | Rob Portman | senator | Ohio | 2016 | presidential candidate

Analysts: Sen. Rob Portman Has '16 White House Ambitions

Analysts: Sen. Rob Portman Has '16 White House Ambitions
Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio. (Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images)

By    |   Thursday, 02 October 2014 02:20 PM

Even as he crisscrosses the country stumping for other candidates, political analysts are painting Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, as a serious contender with White House ambitions of his own.

Portman, finance chair for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, has yet to announce any formal presidential plans, but commented recently to reporters when asked about his decision on a 2016 campaign, "After the election, I am going to have serious discussions with people I respect, and look at the field.

"I haven't taken the time to really do that analysis. I will do so after the election," he told The Washington Post.

Portman has been ducking and dodging that question for some time, telling the Cleveland Plain Dealer, for example, that his timetable for a decision is "After the election, yeah. As you can see, I'm all in on 2014" and the approaching November mid-terms.

However, even as far back as March, Larry Sabato, professor of politics at the University of Virginia and writer for the university's Center for Politics' newsletter, Crystal Ball, wondered, "He’s serious, credible and smart. So why isn’t there more Portman chatter?"

That chatter is starting to get noisier, especially as Portman heads to Iowa, a traditional early stop for presidential wannabes, ostensibly to stump for Republican state Sen. Joni Ernst in her battle against Rep. Bruce Braley, D-Iowa, for the Senate seat vacated by Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa and, while he's at it, to take the pulse of Iowans concerning his 2016 chances.

He told the Plan Dealer, "Well, I'll be seeing some folks. We're doing three fundraisers, maybe four. And then I'm going at least to one, maybe two victory centers. We're doing a business roundtable discussion in Des Moines.

"But this is a trip really to help Joni, to get her volunteers pumped up and to help her raise more money for her campaign."

And Portman is sounding more and more like a presidential candidate.

"I worry about the direction of the country," he told the Post. "This is about our country, and figuring out how to get to 'yes' and solve some of these problems that have been sitting out there too long. We need to deal with the underlying sources of poverty and lack of opportunity. To me it's about how best to move this country forward."

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Even as he crisscrosses the country stumping for other candidates, political analysts are painting Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, as a serious contender with White House ambitions of his own.
Rob Portman, senator, Ohio, 2016, presidential candidate
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2014-20-02
Thursday, 02 October 2014 02:20 PM
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