Following Donald Trump’s successful jump from reality TV to politics, Democratic insiders are reportedly pushing talk show host Jerry Springer to run for Ohio governor in 2018.
That’s according to a report out from Business Insider, citing chatter from “Democrats familiar with the race”:
Springer’s proponents have highlighted his ability in the era of President Donald Trump to provide his own funding for a campaign, and to connect with working-class voters familiar with his television show and history in Ohio politics.
Those discussing a possible run with the talk-show host include former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, who ran for Senate last year, said Tim Burke, the Hamilton County Democratic Party chairman. And several Democrats said recent conversations with Springer, as well as his schedule, suggested he seemed to be more seriously interested in running this time than in years past.
Hamilton County is home to Cincinnati, where Springer served as mayor in the late 1970s.
Strickland confirmed to Business Insider that he had discussed a potential run with Springer. He said he has also spoken with candidates such as Dayton mayor Nan Whaley, former state representative Connie Pillich, and the former state Senate minority leader, Joe Schiavoni.
Springer hasn’t confirmed that he’s considering a run. The talk show host did, however, suggest that he would be a Democrat with a populist appeal similar to Trump’s if he were to run.
In February, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported:
The rumor mill is churning about the king of sleazy daytime TV possibly running for Ohio governor in 2018. We’ve been here before with Springer, who often gets mentioned as a potential statewide candidate.
But the former Cincinnati mayor insists it’s not happening this time, either, although Springer still hasn’t ruled out ever returning to politics.
“What’s probably giving it more juice this time is the Trump victory,” Springer told Politics Extra. “People are thinking that somebody outside the traditional political establishment can win. His constituency is basically mine. These are fans of the show. I could be Trump without the racism.”
Springer calls himself a “populist, liberal progressive,” and he has developed a following in Ohio’s rural and working-class counties – the same parts of the state that helped put Trump in the White House.
Springer said those voters will soon realize that Trump “duped” working-class Ohioans.
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