Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown will hold his Senate seat in Ohio.
“No one fights harder for working people in this country than Sherrod Brown,” said Sen. Patty Murray, who chairs the Democrats’ Senate campaign committee. “Despite nearly $30 million of attack ads from the special interests, the people of Ohio saw that Sherrod Brown is exactly the kind of person they need in the United States Senate. Sherrod Brown is someone who always stands up for good-paying jobs, for education, and for economic fairness and I look forward to continuing our work together in the US Senate.”
Going into this cycle, Brown was considered one of the most vulnerable Democratic incumbents, but he solidified his position six months ago and had long been a favorite to win re-election over the younger Mandel, who entered the Senate race shortly after having been elected to state office, raising concerns among his critics over his commitment to elected office.
But as a progressive in a swing state who’d supported President Obama, and voted for unpopular measures like the stimulus and health care law, Brown became a top conservative target.
Republicans and outside groups turned Ohio into post-Citizens United. campaign finance laboratory, and forced Democrats, unions and other groups to mobilize on Brown’s behalf.
Thus Mandel’s defeat comes despite benefiting from an enormous influx of outside and undisclosed spending on his behalf. But Brown buoyed himself not just by battling back on the airwaves. In 2009, he supported Obama’s plan to rescue the auto industry, now credited with saving hundreds of thousands of jobs in Ohio. Mandel opposed the plan, which remains popular in the state, and is one of the key reason’s the state’s unemployment rate remains significantly lower than unemployment nationwide.
After a long campaign, Brown was too hoarse to deliver his own victory speech. His wife, Connie Schultz, did it for him.
Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight, and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at email@example.com.