Trump’s position as Republican kingmaker is no longer in doubt as all 22 of the candidates he endorsed were victorious on Tuesday.
The highlight of the night was the win of J.D. Vance in Ohio’s senate primary. He was in third when Trump endorsed and on Tuesday he won the Republican nomination.
Trump has endorsed 130 candidates overall but on Tuesday he put the political world on notice.
This year, his record is considerably better. In the March Texas primaries, his first true test of 2022, all of Trump’s chosen congressional and statewide candidates won their races with the exception of scandal-plagued state Attorney General Ken Paxton, who is in a runoff later this month.
In Tuesday’s Indiana and Ohio primaries, Trump once again ran the table: All 22 of his endorsed candidates won. He threw his support behind almost every House GOP incumbent running for reelection — and a few hopefuls in open seat primaries — and his preferred candidate won in every case. His pick in the the highest profile race of the day, the Ohio Senate GOP primary, also won the nomination largely due to Trump’s endorsement power.
Of course, the bar for success wasn’t that high: Trump backed numerous incumbents who faced token primary opposition or were unopposed.
Notably, Trump did not endorse in the Ohio governor’s race, where Republican Gov. Mike DeWine — one of the first prominent Republicans to acknowledge President Joe Biden’s victory — fended off a stiff primary challenge. Trump bypassed the Indiana Senate race as well, where Sen. Todd Young — who said Trump bears responsibility for the January 6 attacks — won renomination. Trump also didn’t back Rep. David Joyce, the incumbent in Ohio’s 14th District, who issued a statement last year denying that the 2020 election was stolen.
The wins came in Ohio and Indiana, and included the win of Trump endorsed United States Representative Greg Pence, who is the brother of Trump’s Vice President Mike Pence.