COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A leading figure in a conservative backlash against the Ohio Republican Party says he's running for chairman.
Tom Zawistowski, a businessman and tea party leader from Portage County, announced the bid Tuesday to succeed Chairman Bob Bennett.
Zawistowski was among 80 self-identified conservatives who wrote to state party leaders last month objecting to a series of their recent actions. Those included U.S. Sen. Rob Portman's policy shift in favor of same-sex marriage and Gov. John Kasich's (KAY'-siks) support for Medicaid expansion under the federal health care law.
Zawistowski says he's got the right skills to bring together conservatives and moderates.
Executive Director Matt Borges is Bennett's favored successor, with support from all Ohio's top Republican officials. Borges said Tuesday he takes nothing for granted.
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