Report: Ohio Tea Partier Switching From Senate To House Race

Tom Ganley, an auto dealer who had been seeking the Republican Senate nomination in Ohio, is expected to switch races and instead run for a House seat, against incumbent Democratic Rep. Betty Sutton. This is a big gain for former Rep. Rob Portman, the frontrunner for the Republican nomination, who now has a clear path through the primary.

Ganley had been attempting to mount an anti-establishment, Tea Party-linked campaign against Portman, but polls had consistently shown him failing to catch on. Reports indicate that a Ganley internal poll had shown him running well against Sutton. On paper, though, Sutton’s district could be a tough climb for Ganley. It voted 57%-42% for Barack Obama in 2008, and before that it voted 56%-44% for John Kerry in 2004.

However, as CQ points out, Ganley will be able to transfer his $1.3 million cash on hand from the Senate race (much of it self-financed) over to the House race. By comparison, Sutton had only $210,000 cash on hand as of December 31.