Rep. Steve Stivers from Ohio declared on Monday, in a shocking move that he shall be resigning from the 15th Congressional District. His resignation will be effective from May 16. He has resigned so he can lead the Chamber of Commerce for the state.
Stivers’s announcement to resign from the elected office has been surprising because he raised $1.4 million in 2021 to run for the U.S. Senate. Just the previous week, he had reiterated any interest in the chamber. Politico confirmed with Stivers that he will not campaign to precede the retiring Sen. Rob Portman.
This move by Steve will now call for a special election for a seat that includes Athens as well as the southern Columbus area. Donald Trump in 2020 took this seat for 56-42 and in 2016 he also took this constituency for 55-40. In 2018 however, Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown won this District with 50-48, however that victory was seen as he won the state with a margin of 52-46.
Steve started working for Bank One as a lobbyist in state politics and in 2003 he was appointed to a State Senate Seat. Steve has served with the Army National Guard in Iraq. He won his first term in 2004 when he was stationed overseas.
In 2008, Republican Rep. Deborah Pryce retired and hence Steve ran for Congress from a Columbus seat which was a supporter of George W. Bush. Steve had been approached by the Republicans many times but he had turned them down, however, when they could not find any candidate to fill the seat, he stepped in.
Steve secured the GOP nomination easily and faced Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy who was a commissioner in Franklin County. Steve ran a good campaign where he showcased himself as an ordinary person with a military background.
Barack Obama won the seat with 54-45. House Minority Leader John Boehner recruited Steve again. In 2010, Stivers won against Kilroy with a 54-41 majority.
He was chosen by the GOP to lead the NRCC in 2018 when he won the reelection. Steve ran the committee by issuing many commercials which concluded some racist messages being put up in New York. Steve was also found defending some Anti-Semitic advertisements at the time in Minnesota as he lead the committee.
Stivers sent millions for defending Virginia Rep. Barbara Comstock as the chair of NRCC even though she seemed in bad shape. He said at the time, “I know there have been reports about her potentially getting cut off. In the last poll, I looked at she’s winning. I’m not going to cut off somebody who is winning.” She was not cut off by the NRCC and they ended up spending the most money on that Virginia seat than any other seat in the country.
Cornstock however lost with a 56-44 loss. His successor as the chair for NRCC, Tom Emmer commented that Steve had been “inundated with complaints about the $5 million spent on TV ads to help Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock.”