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Ohio’s Portman says he won’t seek White House in ‘16

Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, has said he is "inclined" to support the bill. His vote could put it over the top.
Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, has said he is "inclined" to support the bill. His vote could put it over the top. AP

Sen. Rob Portman said Tuesday he will not seek the presidency in 2016.

The Ohio Republican instead plans to seek another Senate term that year. Portman has been considered a Republican establishment favorite, particularly attractive because he has won statewide election in the nation’s premier swing state. 2012 presidential nominee Mitt Romney reportedly considered him seriously as a running mate, and Portman has served as White House budget director and trade representative.

Portman told AP that he wanted to help Republicans run the Senate – the party has control of the chamber for the next two years – and running for president would be difficult.

Portman has been regarded as one of the Senate’s more deliberative center-right members. He got notice last year when he announced his support for same-sex marriage, saying he had changed his position after his son said he was gay.

Portman told AP he saw "broad field of impressive candidates" among Republicans who might seek the White House in 2016. He is close to the Bush family, and said he talked to former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush Monday. Bush, according to AP, “indicated he hasn't decided yet on 2016.”

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