Former President Donald Trump’s most ardent supporters of “America First” policies are praising his endorsement of best-selling author J.D. Vance, a national populist, in the Ohio Republican Senate primary race.
Vance, whose best-selling memoir Hillbilly Elegy was adapted into a movie in 2020, received Trump’s “complete and total endorsement” in the crowded race that also includes former Ohio State Treasurer Josh Mandel, investment banker Mike Gibbons, and former Ohio Republican Party chairwoman Jane Timken.
“[Vance is] strong on the border, tough on crime, understands how to use taxes and tariffs to hold China accountable, will fight to break up Big Tech, and has been a warrior on the rigged and stolen presidential election,” Trump wrote in his endorsement.
Vance thanked Trump for the endorsement, writing:
I’m incredibly honored to have President Trump’s support. He was an incredible fighter for hard working Americans in the White House, he will be again, and I’ll fight for the America First Agenda in the Senate. [Emphasis added]
I’m incredibly honored to have President Trump’s support. He was an incredible fighter for hard working Americans in the White House, he will be again, and I’ll fight for the America First Agenda in the Senate. https://t.co/s3d3JhTgBC
— J.D. Vance (@JDVance1) April 15, 2022
In response, Trump’s most influential backers praised the endorsement. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) wrote that “Trump made the right choice!” and that Republicans “need [Vance] in Washington to fight back against those who put America last.”
Likewise, Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) — who also heads the National Republican Study Committee (NRSC) — called on Ohio Republican primary voters to join Trump and back Vance in the race.
“Support [Vance] for US Senate! #MAGA,” Banks wrote. Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), a longtime supporter of Vance’s Senate campaign, wrote “On to victory!” following news of the endorsement.
President Trump made the right choice!
— Matt Gaetz (@mattgaetz) April 15, 2022
— Jim Banks (@Jim_Banks) April 15, 2022
On to victory!
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) April 15, 2022
Republican Bernie Moreno, who dropped out of the race in February, called on GOP primary voters to rally around Vance in an effort to coalesce support against Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH), the likely Democrat nominee for Senate.
“Ohio Republicans: Let’s unite & make certain we keep the seat in Republican hands,” Moreno wrote. “As we have seen [Tim Ryan] is a shallow, useless, and tired career D.C. bureaucrat who has done nothing for the people he was paid to serve. Time for him to go home. [Vance] will make that happen.”
Former Trump administration official Ric Grenell, a one-time supporter of Moreno, suggested he too is fully behind Vance now that Trump has endorsed him.
Ohio Republicans: let’s unite & make certain we keep the seat in Republican hands.
As we have seen @TimRyan is a shallow, useless, and tired career DC bureaucrat who has done nothing for the people he was paid to serve. Time for him to go home. @JDVance1 will make that happen. https://t.co/cf5e0M9wvy
— Bernie Moreno (@berniemoreno) April 15, 2022
— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) April 15, 2022
Other former Trump administration officials like Cliff Sims, Darren Beattie, and Stephen Miller suggested support for the endorsement.
“Trump made the right choice endorsing J.D. Vance,” Beattie wrote.
Political consultant Arthur Schwartz wrote that Vance is the only candidate in the Ohio GOP Senate primary “that is pretty much guaranteed to win the general…” Conservative Kurt Schlichter similarly heaped praise on Trump for the endorsement.
Christopher Rufo of the Manhattan Institute called Trump’s endorsement of Vance “a big moment” for the Republican Party.
Trump made the right choice endorsing JD Vance—- he’ll be excellent in the Senate https://t.co/E6RGlrk6oI
— Darren J. Beattie ἱ (@DarrenJBeattie) April 15, 2022
— Cliff Sims (@Cliff_Sims) April 15, 2022
Fantastic endorsement from DJT. There’s only one candidate in the OH GOP senate primary that is pretty much guaranteed to win the general, and that candidate is America First warrior JD Vance. https://t.co/3n20kOcjIN
— Arthur Schwartz (@ArthurSchwartz) April 15, 2022
Nothing would make me happier than @JDVance1 repping my home state of Ohio in the Senate except JD being cloned and JDVance2 running against and crushing Sherrod “Buckeye Bernie” Brown. pic.twitter.com/ysbxeUo58i
— Kurt Schlichter (@KurtSchlichter) April 14, 2022
Vance’s candidacy has represented the populist-nationalist-wing of the GOP with policy prescriptions for reducing the social and market power of giant tech corporations, punishing multinational companies that outsource American jobs, and critiquing the political establishment’s lust for foreign interventionism.
In an exclusive interview with Breitbart News from January, for instance, Vance said Big Tech companies are simply too big and too powerful and that conservatives must get behind efforts to cut their control over Americans.
“A big part of, what’s a driving the censorship machine with Big Tech is these companies are just too big, and they are too powerful. When you have that much concentrated power, it leads to censorship. It leads to control. I think we should break these companies up,” Vance said. “Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp is actually the same company. Those should be at least three separate companies.”
“Amazon controls the entire modern hardware infrastructure of the Internet. We should not allow that to happen,” Vance continued. “We should forcibly break them up and create more competition in the same way that Teddy Roosevelt created competition in the steel industry.”
Vance’s speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) assailed elected politicians who are helping fund the United States’ involvement in the Ukraine-Russia conflict even as the U.S.-Mexico border has seen record-breaking illegal immigration and drug trafficking over the last year.
“One of the biggest ways that the Democrats have failed the working class, have failed the citizens of this country, is that they don’t even care about their citizens compared to the illegal aliens flowing across the U.S. southern border,” Vance said.
Vance has even gone after BlackRock, the Wall Street multinational investment firm, for buying up single-family homes across the U.S. at above-market prices, resulting in first-time homeowners and young Americans getting shut out of home ownership.
“Blackrock is pursuing an investment strategy that will make it harder for young Americans to own homes,” Vance wrote. “The Left will ignore this because Blackrock has committed to ‘racial audits’ and other diversity BS.”
The Ohio Republican Senate primary election is set for May 3.