Author JD Vance has won the Ohio’s GOP Senate primary after being endorsed by former President Donald Trump in the hotly contested race.
With 95 percent of the votes counted, Vance had 32 percent of the vote in the seven-way race. Former Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel came in second with 24 percent of the vote, and State Senator Matt Dolan was in third place with 22.5 percent.
As recently as last March, Vance was languishing in fourth place, but his fortunes quickly changed after Trump endorsed him in mid-April.
The Yale-educated writer will face Democrat Rep. Tim Ryan in the general election in November. Vance, 37, is best known for his memoir, Hillbilly Elegy, which recounts his upbringing in Appalachian Kentucky.
Vance was sharply critical of Trump during and shortly after the 2016 election, which put him at odds with many “MAGA” supporters in the state.
Last month, Trump acknowledged that Vance had been critical of him in the past, but argued that he gives Republicans the best shot at winning in a general election.
“Like some others, J.D. Vance may have said some not so great things about me in the past, but he gets it now, and I have seen that in spades,” Trump said. “He is our best chance for victory in what could be a very tough race. The Democrats will be spending many millions of dollars, but the good news is that they have a defective candidate who ran for President and garnered exactly zero percent in the polls. The bottom line is, we must have a Republican victory in Ohio.”
Vance thanked Trump for his endorsement during his victory speech Tuesday night.
“A lot of the Fake News Media out there…they wanted to write a story that this campaign would be the death of Donald Trump’s America First Agenda,” the former never-Trumper said. “Ladies & Gentlemen, it ain’t the death of the America First Agenda!”
.@JDVance1 Thanking President Trump During Victory Speech
"A lot of the Fake News Media out there…they wanted to write a story that this campaign would be the death of Donald Trump's America First Agenda. Ladies & Gentlemen, it ain't the death of the America First Agenda!" pic.twitter.com/V4cVc16HSo
— The Columbia Bugle 🇺🇸 (@ColumbiaBugle) May 4, 2022