Ohio U.S. Representative Jim Renacci has put the speculation to rest, confirming his entry into the 2018 Ohio Governor's race Monday morning.
The announcement that he's filed the official paperwork with Secretary of State Jon Husted's office came in the 9 a.m. hour.
In a release, Renacci said, "For far too long, career politicians in both Washington and Columbus have been looking out for themselves, not us, and now more than ever we need a serious, conservative outsider to lead our state who will always put Ohio first. We need a leader who will end the “pay to play” sweetheart deals that have corrupted Columbus. We need a leader who truly understands what it takes to keep and attract good paying jobs to Ohio and who knows how to simplify our tax code for Ohio families and businesses. And we need a leader who will put an end to the over-regulation that continues to hold Ohio’s economy back."
See the Renacci Campaign video:
Rep. Jim Renacci (R-Wadsworth) is looking ahead to next year and the beginning of the Trump administration with several bills he plans to propose in the new session of Congress, including bills on infrastructure and the budget. He joined Jasen to talk about those bills, his thoughts on a congressional investigation into alleged Russian hacking, and the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act.
Rep. Jim Renacci (R-Wadsworth) was one of President Elect Donald Trump's earliest supporters in Ohio, and now his name is in the national discussion for a cabinet post.
A Forbes column last week made the case as to why Renacci should receive an appointment. Renacci joined Jasen and said while he has had discussions with Trump's transition team, he has not talked with Trump specifically about a cabinet post.
One of the biggest debates in the wake of the deadly terror attacks in Paris has been whether to accept refugees from Syria. The governors of 32 states have asked the federal government to not place Syrian refugees in their states, and there is speculation that Republicans in Congress may insert language into a key spending bill to block Syrian refugees from being accepted into the United States.
Rep. Jim Renacci (R-Wadsworth) believes Ohio Gov. John Kasich made the right decision by calling for Syrians to not be placed in Ohio.
"We need to ensure those coming over have no ties to ISIS or other terrorist organizations. We need to have a system in place, we need to be screening." Renacci said. "If we can't do that, we shouldn't just be allowing individuals to come in."
Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Niles) sees it differently. While he also wants to make sure terrorists don't enter the country, he says there are safeguards in place to ensure the wrong people don't come in.
"If we don't know something... or we don't know who exactly you are, you don't get in the country," Ryan said.
When asked about the "gaps" in the ability to vet Syrian refugees noted last month by FBI director James Comey, Ryan said a refugee whose information falls into one of those gaps would not gain entry into the United States.
The House of Representatives is expected to vote on a bill that would, among other changes, require FBI background checks for refugees. The Associated Press reports President Barack Obama has threatened to veto the bill if it reaches his desk.