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Ohio voters picked a new governor, backed the full slate of Republicans to statewide non-judicial offices and killed Issue 1. Local voters backed the Five Rivers MetroParks levy and Dayton voters OK’d effort to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana.
It also was a night where some familiar faces lost their seats locally and some newcomers won.
Here’s a look at some of the highlights from Election Day:
Mike DeWine wins governor race
Republican Mike DeWine won Ohio’s governor race Tuesday in a big night for the GOP, which swept the ticket of executive offices – attorney general, auditor, secretary of state and treasurer – for the third consecutive statewide election cycle.
Around midnight, DeWine and his running mate, Jon Husted, and their families took the stage at the Ohio Republican Party event in Columbus to declare victory in what had been a hard-fought campaign. DeWine saluted his Democratic opponent Richard Cordray, who he said “fought a tough, tough race – about as tough as I want.”
He added “Tonight one journey ends and the other begins. As we begin this journey tonight, we must work, not as Democrats, not as Republicans, but as Ohioans. Ohioans united around our shared mission to ensure that every single person in this state, every child, not matter where they’re born, no matter who their parents are, no matter what their circumstances are, has the opportunity to live up to their God-given potential. That is our mission.”
Democrats win U.S. House, U.S. Senate stays Republican
Democrats were on track to gain House control Tuesday night, but Republicans held their Senate majority as voters rendered a mixed verdict in the first nationwide election of Donald Trump’s turbulent presidency.
The Democrats picked up the 23 seats they would need to take from the GOP, but were still short of the 218 total to wrest control with more races still undecided.
The results allowed both parties to claim partial victory, and highlighted an extraordinary realignment of U.S. voters by race, sex and education. Republicans maintained their strength in conservative, rural states, while Democrats made inroads across America’s suburbs.
Ohio voters defeated State Issue 1 Tuesday 63 percent to 37 percent, according to final, unofficial results.
The proposed constitutional amendment would have changed Ohio law to keep low-level drug offenders out of prison with the goal of promoting treatment of drug addiction instead of incarceration. But opponents raised concerns about the impact removing the threat of punishment would have on Ohio’s drug courts.
In the Dayton region Republican Montgomery County Sheriff Phil Plummer won the House 40th District and newcomer Jena Powell won Miami and Darke County’s 80th District, according to the Ohio Secretary of State’s website. State Reps. Niraj Antani, R-Miamisburg, Rick Perales, R-Beavercreek, Jim Butler, R-Oakwood, Paul Zeltwanger, R-Mason and Scott Lipps, R-Franklin won re-election.
Dayton voters overwhelmingly want the city to reduce the penalties for pot.
Nearly three-quarters of Dayton voters said yes Tuesday to Issue 8, which asked if they wished to decriminalize misdemeanor marijuana offenses, according to unofficial final results from the Montgomery County Board of Elections.
Republicans win statewide offices, but Sen. Brown remains strong for Democrats
All of Ohio’s non-judicial statewide offices went to Republicans Tuesday night.
State Auditor Dave Yost will be the next attorney general. Keith Faber will be the next state auditor. State Rep. Robert Sprague will be the next state treasurer and Frank LaRose the next secretary of state.
Despite those big wins for Republicans statewide, Sen. Sherrod Brown defied the trend and easily defeated his Republican challenger Jim Renacci.