Ohio GOP lieutenant governor faces political test over tweet

National

FILE – In this Oct. 16, 2018, file photo, Jon Husted, then a candidate for Ohio Lt. Governor, speaks at the Columbus Chamber of Commerce Government Day, in Cincinnati, Ohio. Now the current Ohio lieutenant governor, Husted entered the coronavirus pandemic as one of Ohio’s rising Republican stars. Following an uninterrupted two-decade climb from state representative, to House speaker, to state senator, to secretary of state, to lieutenant governor, his next stop was supposed to be the Governor’s Residence. But his party’s hard turn to the right has required deft recalculation. (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Republican Ohio Lt. Gov. Jon Husted entered the coronavirus pandemic a Republican rising star.

But his party’s hard turn to the right and many member’s deep hatred of COVID-19 restrictions have required deft recalculation.

University of Cincinnati political scientist David Niven says Husted’s increasingly provocative rhetoric on social media over the past year including the inflammatory phrase “Wuhan Virus” is intended for the state and national Republican base.

The outcome of Husted’s meeting Friday with Asian American neighbors from his suburban Columbus neighborhood could signal where he sees his political future.

(Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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