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Sen. Brown Says Democratic Wins Should Send Signal To Ohioans

Ohio U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown
J. Scott Applewhite
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington.

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown says Ohio could learn from this week’s wins for Democrats in New Jersey and Virginia.

Brown says that when voters elected Democratic governors in the two states — and a number of other Democrats around the country — this week, they were really sending a message about the federal government and its handling of things like health care.

He says that should resonate with Ohioans next year.

“I’ve fought to keep insurance for the 900,000 people that have insurance now [and] the 200,000 that are getting opioid treatment,” Brown says. “The consumer protections on pre-existing conditions and cancelling insurance policies and all that.”

Brown adds that he feels voters were also commenting on the Republican tax plan and its support for wealthy individuals. Brown says he’s not sure President Trump is aware that that’s in the bill.

In his weekly conference call with reporters, Brown also said he’s standing by his vote earlier this year for Wilbur Ross to be Secretary of Commerce but wants to know more about Ross’ finances and alleged ties to Russia.

Ross has faced questions about his part ownership of a shipping company that does business with a Russian firm with ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Brown had voted for confirmation based on Ross’ work with steel firms. This week, he reiterated that support but also said Ross needs to come clean.

“Ross absolutely needs to disclose this information. We don’t know if he’s profiting in his job,” Brown said. “But I’ve been pleased with the job he’s done on the enforcement of steel and on China’s steel overcapacity. But he needs to own up to who he is and what he is and what he owns.”

Ross’ involvement with the shipping company – which is co-owned by Putin’s son-in-law – was revealed in a leak of more than 13-million documents from a Bermuda law firm, known as the “Paradise Papers.”

Kabir Bhatia joined WKSU as a Reporter/Producer and weekend host in 2010. A graduate of Hudson High School, he received his Bachelor's from Kent State University. While a Kent student, Bhatia served as a WKSU student assistant, working in the newsroom and for production.