After staggering losses last November, Democrats need a net gain of five seats in 2016 to reclaim a Senate majority — and New Hampshire, Ohio and Florida are high on the party’s target list of seats. President Barack Obama won all three states in 2012 and 2008.
Portman was on the short list to be Mitt Romney’s running mate in 2012. His friendship with former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who is exploring a presidential bid, means he could find himself in a similar spot in 2016.
This possibility has made the Buckeye State’s Senate race more alluring to Democrats. Cincinnati City Councilmemeber P.G. Sittenfeld has already entered the race, and at least two more Democrats — former Gov. Ted Strickland and Rep. Tim Ryan are considering bids.