Former president Donald Trump was ready to jump into Ohio's 2022 U.S. Senate race, and had to be talked out of making an endorsement more than a year away from the midterm elections.
The twice-impeached one-term president met with Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel last week at Mar-A-Lago, and she may have skirted bylaws against her involvement in primary campaigns by speaking positively of her good friend and Senate candidate Jane Timken, reported Axios.
"Chairwoman McDaniel is good friends with Jane Timken and thinks highly of her," said RNC spokesman Mike Reed. "But, Chairwoman McDaniel did not make any recommendations on endorsements to President Trump and remains neutral in the primary."
Trump asked McDaniel whether Timken -- until recently the chair of Ohio's Republican Party -- was "loyal" to him, and he discussed endorsing her over former state treasurer Josh Mandel in the GOP primary race to replace the retiring Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH).
The former president had to be talked out of getting involved in that race by top advisers, including Donald Trump Jr., saying it was too early to see how the campaign would unfold and pointed out that other candidates were loyalists.
Timken demonstrated her loyalty this week by calling on her own congressman, Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH), to resign over his vote to impeach the former president over his role in the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection.
"It's way too early to make endorsement decisions in many of the races, particularly when primaries are more than a year away," Trump adviser Jason Miller told Axios. "This is much broader than any one race."
Trump has already made some endorsements in the upcoming midterm elections, including Bob Paduchik's successful bid to succeed Timken as GOP chair, Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) for re-election and his former White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders as candidate for governor of Arkansas.
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