WASHINGTON— Last week, Republican Rep. Brad Wenstrup announced his intent to seek re-election to the U.S. House of Representatives in Ohio’s 2nd Congressional District.

Wenstrup, whose district includes Pike County, has led the district since 2012 and would be pursuing a sixth term in Washington. In his most recent election, he received over 72% of the county vote in 2020.

“I look forward to continuing to represent the hard-working people of Southern Ohio as I fight for the safety, security and economic prosperity of everyone I serve.” Wenstrup said in a released statement.

On the issues he will continue focusing on, Wenstrup said it is paramount that steps are taken to strengthen the nation’s supply chain, increasing access to health care, border security, military readiness, and caring for our nation’s veterans.

“We must stop and think, are we leaving this world a better place for our kids and grandkids,” Wenstrup said. “What we do today has an impact on those we love and the trajectory of our nation. Today matters and the future matters even more.”

The area which Ohio’s second congressional district includes will be different from the one Wenstrup has represented during his time in Washington.

All of Pike County will remain in this district, but now counties east of it like Jackson, Lawrence, Gallia, Vinton, Hocking, Meigs, and all of Scioto are part of the district. Portions of Ross County and all of Clermont, Adams, Brown, and Highland also stay as members of the district.

Senate Bill 258 crafted the congressional districts, which Gov. Mike DeWine signed on Saturday.

In a statement, the governor said this map made the “most progress to produce a fair, compact, and competitive map,” since had less county and city splits than other proposals.

Proposals like Ohio Sen Rob McColley’s, R-Napoleon, would have split Pike County in two districts- the 2nd and 15th congressional districts.

“With seven competitive congressional districts in the SB 258 map, this map significantly increases the number of competitive districts versus the current map,” DeWine said of the map which keeps the cities of Akron, Canton, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Dayton, and Toledo all whole within the same congressional map for the first time since the 1840s.

SB 258 passed the Ohio House of Representatives last week in a 55-37 vote, which the lack of bipartisan vote means it will stand for four years, not 10. Rep. Shane Wilkin, R-Hillsboro, voted in favor.

Challenges have been mounted against the map this week as Ohio Democrats and left-leaning organizations have voiced their displeasure.

“Mike DeWine has spent his decades in politics only looking out for his own interests, and the redistricting process has put a giant spotlight on his inability to look out for anyone but himself, said Ohio Democratic Party Spokesperson Matt Keyes. “DeWine and the Ohio GOP are doing everything and anything they can to prevent voters from holding them accountable at the ballot box while they continue to betray Ohioans at every turn.”

Contact Patrick Keck at pkeck@newswatchman.com or by phone at 740-947-2149, ext. 300431 and follow him on Twitter @pkeckreporter.

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