COLUMBUS, Ohio – Republican primary candidate for U.S. Senate Jane Timken said her political action committee (PAC)’s support for supporting conservative candidates for Ohio school boards helped 21 candidates win seats at the November 2 ballot boxes across the state.

Her Jobs for A New Economy Political Action Committee supported 43 school board candidates throughout the state this fall with donations as well as providing field support, robocalls and text messaging assistance in the weeks and days leading up to the election.

“I think education is key to the American dream and the jobs of the future,” Timken said in an interview with The Ohio Star.

Timken created the federal leadership PAC designed to help like-minded candidates in early March at the start of her bid to become the GOP nominee to replace U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) who had announced earlier this year he would not stand for re-election in November 2022. The JANE PAC began with $15,000 but had expended $11,632 by June 30, the end of the last Federal Elections Commission filing period.

Timken said her campaign includes opposition to mandatory masking of school children and COVID-19 vaccinations as well as opposition to teaching Critical Race Theory in public schools.

She lauded conservative parents who have rallied against these anti-freedom policies.

She said many of the successful candidates outside of the New Albany and Pickerington district races were challengers to incumbents.

“Parents are standing up and fighting back,” she said.

Other ways to help

U.S. Senate race rival Michael Gibbons revealed at the October 24 Center for Christian Virtue candidate forum that he had personally donated to 73 candidates running for school board in Ohio.

He first announced his intent to support school board candidates in mid-August at the Cuyahoga County Republican Party dinner.

His campaign declined to comment on the amount donated or the electoral results of that support but a spokeswoman confirmed the donations.

He commented on October 27 on a Timken campaign release on her PAC’s contributions as well as a list of the candidates she supported.

“It’s nice to see Jane Timken joining a project I announced more than two months ago,” Gibbons said in the tweet.

“I am not contributing to School Board candidates to enhance my election. I am in doing t because I believe it is important to ensure our kids receive the best possible education,” Gibbons wrote in the Oct. 27 tweet.

U.S. Senate competitor Mark Pukita downplayed the financial support of “monied Senate candidates (who) threw money at some races.”

“Our campaign has been involved (in local education issues) across the state for months,” he texted The Ohio Star. “Going to school board meetings, helping people qualify to be on the ballot, our ‘Contract with the Districts‘ (and) my going in front of the Ohio Board of Education to embarrass the board into repealing their racist ‘Resolution 20.’ ”

Resolution 20 was a July 2020 policy statement passed in support of black students and other minority students that called for “equity” many conservatives interpreted as implicit support for Critical Race Theory.

Pukita had confronted the board during public meetings and spoke during a September 21 Stop CRT in Ohio rally at the Statehouse.

The state board rescinded the controversial resolution in mid-October.

“My action has helped us protect Ohio children and families,” Pukita wrote. “I have the ‘receipts’ – videos, pictures, and social media posts.”

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Brian R. Ball is a veteran Columbus journalist writing for The Ohio Star and the Star News Network. Send him news tips to [email protected]
Photo “Jane Timken” by Jane Timken For U.S. Senate. Photo “U.S. Senate” by U.S. Senate.