May 4, 2022 - News

DeWine, Whaley will face off in Ohio governor's race

Nan Whaley and Cheryl Stephens, Democratic candidates for governor and lieutenant governor of Ohio, on the campaign trail.
Nan Whaley and Cheryl Stephens, the Democratic candidates for governor and lieutenant governor of Ohio. Photo: Joshua A. Bickel/The Columbus Dispatch/USA Today Network

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine successfully fended off a GOP primary challenge and will face former Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley this November in his quest for another term.

Between the lines: The governor's hands-on approach early in the pandemic led a trio of fellow Republicans to run against him, but the anti-DeWine faction split its vote among the three challengers.

Meanwhile, Whaley defeated John Cranley in a battle of former southwest Ohio mayors seeking the Democratic nomination.

  • AP called the race with Whaley tallying nearly double the vote of the former Cincinnati mayor.

State of play: Whaley could be come the first woman ever elected governor of Ohio.

  • She's campaigning alongside lieutenant governor candidate Cheryl Stephens, a Cuyahoga County council member.

Be smart: The general election will pit two executive officials who once worked closely together in response to a mass shooting and tornado outbreak in 2019, followed by the pandemic a year later.

  • Whaley backed the gun control legislation DeWine proposed after the deadly shooting and complimented his initial efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19.
  • She's since been more critical, condemning DeWine for signing a law removing gun permit requirements and frequently referencing his administration's reported ties to the House Bill 6 scandal.
Gov. Mike DeWine and former Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley embrace in a 2019 photo.
DeWine embraces Whaley during a 2019 memorial service following a mass shooting in August which left 10 people dead. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images
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