NONPARTISAN CANDIDATE GUIDE: 2018 OHIO SENATOR’S RACE

Sherrod Brown (D – Incumbent)
Sherrod Brown (D – Incumbent)
Jim Renacci (R)
Jim Renacci (R)

Created by the Campus Election Engagement Project, a nonpartisan effort to help college and university administrators, faculty, and student leaders engage their schools in the election. Key sites consulted included Votesmart.org, OntheIssues.org, FactCheck.org, Politifact.com, and public candidate statements. For guides to local races, see Vote411.org from the League of Women Voters and Ballotready.org. For more detailed information visit their votesmart.org pages.

Visit sherrodbrown.com and jimrenacci.com to volunteer. Other senate candidates include Philena Farley (G). Due to limited space, we can’t include candidates polling at less than 15%, but encourage you to check out her website. To download a printable pdf version of this guide, click here.


Abortion: Mostly ban or mostly legal?

Sherrod Brown – Legal. “I will always trust Ohio women to make their health care decisions, plain & simple.”

Jim Renacci – Ban. I firmly believe in the sanctity of life… proud to have a 100 percent pro-life voting record since being elected to Congress.”

 

Campaign Finance: Require political ads to disclose their largest funders?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. “Special interests should not have a louder voice… than middle-class families.

Jim Renacci – No stand found. Did support strengthening Federal Elections Commission.

 

Campaign Finance: Support Citizens United decision, allowing unlimited political donations from corporations & unions?

Sherrod Brown – No. “Corporations are not people.” Supports amendment to overturn.

Jim Renacci – Yes. Considers political donations to be political speech—”the most protected speech there is.”

 

Climate Change: Consider climate change a serious crisis?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. “Pretending that climate change isn’t happening isn’t just foolish. It is very dangerous.”

Jim Renacci – Probable no. In 2010 said emission regulations have “virtually no impact on global temperatures.”

 

Climate Change: Limit or tax production of greenhouse gases? Support US participation in Paris Climate Accord?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. Supported EPA regulating greenhouse gases, said Paris Accord withdrawal would hurt OH clean-energy industries.

Jim Renacci – Contested. Says supports limiting greenhouse emissions if Ohio industries such as coal are not harmed. Opposed EPA regulating greenhouse gases. Supported withdrawal from Paris Accord.

 

Contraception: Allow employers to withhold contraceptive coverage from employees if disagree with it morally?

Sherrod Brown – No. “Healthcare decisions should be between you & your doctor, not the government & your boss.”

Jim Renacci – Likely yes. Obamacare requirement for faith-affiliated employers like hospitals to provide contraceptive coverage was “an assault on religious freedom.”

 

Courts: Support Brett Kavanaugh nomination? (Prior to recent allegations).

Sherrod Brown – No. Serious concerns about rulings against women’s & consumer rights.

Jim Renacci – Yes. A kind-hearted, brilliant, thoughtful, & experienced jurist.”

 

Economy: Support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. Introduced $30 billion loan fund to help smaller manufacturers transition to clean energy economy.

Jim Renacci – Mostly no. Called Obama stimulus “a failed experiment,” though supports Trump infrastructure plan.

 

Economy: Support President Trump’s imposition of tariffs on Chinese steel & other products?

Sherrod Brown – Yes, for protecting steelworkers, but need long-term strategy.  Also tax auto company foreign profits to give $3,500 discount to US-made cars.

Jim Renacci – Yes, but concerned about the negative impact on farmers. Seeks a “balance between free trade & fair trade.”

 

Education: Vouchers to send children to private schools with public money?

Sherrod Brown – No. Longtime opponent.

Jim Renacci – Yes. Strong historical supporter.

 

Environment: Support cutbacks of Environmental Protection Administration?

Sherrod Brown – No. Strongly opposes.

Jim Renacci – Yes. Voted for bill that reduced funding.

 

Financial Regulation: Support Trump administration’s proposed cutbacks of Consumer Financial Protection Bureau?

Sherrod Brown – No. “Now is not the time to let Wall Street & payday lenders call the shots on the budget.”

Jim Renacci – Unclear. Sponsored bill that critics said restricted CFPB’s ability to monitor releases of personal information.

 

Gay Marriage: Support gay marriage?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. “Practicing family values means loving all God’s children.”

Jim Renacci – No. “Marriage should be between one man & one woman.”

 

Gun Control: Support more restrictive gun control legislation?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. Ban assault weapons & high-capacity magazines, expand background checks & raise age to 21.

Jim Renacci – No. Opposes bans on assault weapons & high capacity magazines & expanded background checks.

 

Healthcare: Support or Repeal Affordable Care Act (ACA), known as Obamacare?

Sherrod Brown – Support & improve ACA.  “Repeal would devastate Ohio children” & reduce access to opioid treatment.

Jim Renacci – Repeal ACA. Key to affordable healthcare is increasing competition, decreasing overhead.

 

Healthcare: Let Planned Parenthood receive public funds for non-abortion health care?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. They offer lifesaving cancer screenings, HIV/AIDS prevention & contraception education.”

Jim Renacci – No. Supported defunding.

 

Immigration: Support DACA, allowing “Dreamers” who arrived illegally as children, then grew up in the US, to achieve legal status if meet certain conditions?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. “We should not be targeting young people who are working, going to school, paying taxes & contributing to this country.”

Jim Renacci – No. Voted in 2013 to overturn DACA program interim protection of Dreamers. Now supports Trump’s approach–tying potential legalization to cuts in legal immigration & funding for border wall.

 

Iran: Withdraw from treaty limiting Iran’s nuclear capability & lifting some sanctions?

Sherrod Brown – No. Use remaining sanctions instead of unraveling agreement.

Jim Renacci – Yes. Called Iran #1 state sponsor of terrorism.

 

Marijuana: Legalize or decriminalize marijuana?

Sherrod Brown – Supports medical legalization. Wants to study how legalizing recreational works elsewhere before legalizing in Ohio. Opposes federal intervention.

Jim Renacci – Opposes recreational legalization. Watch how medical implementation goes. Voted against protecting states from federal intervention.

 

Minimum Wage: Raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25/hr?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. Phase in increase to $15.

Jim Renacci – Likely No. Rejected 2013 increase to $10.10.

 

Net Neutrality: Require internet providers to provide equal access to all users?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. Strong supporter.

Jim Renacci – No recent statements found. Has previously opposed regulations supporting Net Neutrality.

 

President Trump: Percentage of key votes supporting Trump’s positions.

Sherrod Brown – 28% as of September.

Jim Renacci – 94% as of September.

 

Privatization: Support full or partial privatization of Social Security?

Sherrod Brown – No. Strong opponent.

Jim Renacci – Partial. Allow workers “to privately invest a portion of their payroll taxes.”

 

Renewable Energy: Support government subsidies for renewable energy?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. Supports strong mix across a diverse mix of clean energy sources.”

Jim Renacci – Mixed. Supported extending renewable tax credits. Proponent of domestic fossil fuel production & opponent of EPA regulation.

 

Student Debt: Refinance student loans at lower rates, paid for by increasing taxes on high earners (Elizabeth Warren proposal)?

Sherrod Brown – Yes. Cosponsored Warren bill. Also supports Pell Grant increase.

Jim Renacci – No. Supporter of student loans, but not government’s role to keep rates down. Unknown on Pell Grants, but supports tax credits for education spending.

 

Taxes: Support President Trump’s tax cuts?

Sherrod Brown – No. “Outrageous that Senators … would try to take health care away from working families … to cut taxes on corporations that send jobs overseas.

Jim Renacci – Yes. They enable Ohio companies “to invest in workers, innovation, & future generations.”

 

Voting Rights: Support stricter voting rules like photo-ID requirements?

Sherrod Brown – No. Should be encouraging people. Photo-ID rules make it harder.

Jim Renacci – Unknown.