Carey’s victory over a crowded primary field that included more established candidates showed Trump’s power within the party at a key moment.
A week earlier, a Trump-backed candidate lost a runoff in Texas to another Republican – questioning the former president’s influence now that he is no longer in office and casting doubt on his ability to settle scores with former rivals in the next midterm elections of the year.
Carey will be frontrunners to win the Nov. 2 Special General Election over State Representative Allison Russo, whose CNN projects win the Democratic nomination, in the heavily Republican district which includes part of Columbus and the more rural area and conservative in the south. The winner will replace former Republican Rep. Steve Stivers, who resigned earlier this year to take a position with the Ohio Chamber of Commerce.
Trump has issued several statements supporting Carey, and a Trump-aligned super PAC spent $ 350,000 on the race.
In a July 15 statement, Trump said Carey was doing well against a “RINO gang” – short for “Republicans in name only” – in the race.
Twelve days later, Trump released another statement supporting Carey, saying he didn’t even know who the other candidates were. “But I know who Mike Carey is – I know a lot about him, and it’s okay. Mike Carey is the only one who has my approval and he’s the one who I think will do the best job for Ohio and for the United States, ”Trump said.
However, other influential Ohio and national figures have backed different candidates, creating an unpredictable environment, especially in a special election with low turnout.
Stivers himself endorsed State Representative Jeff LaRe, a former deputy sheriff, while the Ohio Right to Life endorsed State Senator Bob Peterson.
Kentucky Senator Rand Paul endorsed Ron Hood, a former state lawmaker who echoed Paul’s criticism of Dr Anthony Fauci, the country’s chief infectious disease official. Hood had promised to work closely with Georgia’s far-right representative Marjorie Taylor Greene and said her first act would be to join the House Freedom Caucus.
Debbie Meadows, wife of former Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows, and several other influential Tory activists are aligned with Ruth Edmonds, former Columbus NAACP president and black pastor who has positioned herself as an opponent of the theory criticism of the breed.