State Rep. Bob Hagan announces candidacy for U.S. Senate - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

State Rep. Bob Hagan announces candidacy for U.S. Senate

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COLUMBUS, Ohio - A local State Representative announces he will challenge Rob Portman's U.S. Senate seat.

The U.S. Senate narrowly rejected a proposal to expand federal background checks for gun buyers Wednesday and one vote in particular prompted a Mahoning Valley state legislator to announce his candidacy for Senate.

State Rep. Bob Hagan (D)-58 announced on his Facebook page that he is going to run for Ohio Senator Rob Portman's position in three years.

"I just was outraged that Sen. Portman ignored 90 percent of the American public's view on background checks and just became a pawn of the NRA and it's just outrageous. I'm upset. I'm disappointed and I think that he needs a challenge and people have to know there are people like myself who believe that he did the wrong thing. He voted the wrong way and that's why I'm declaring my candidacy right now," Hagan told 21 News.

Hagan informed his followers on Facebook of the news on Wednesday. His post states: "Senator Portman shows his lack of courage and testicular fortitude. The NRA Owns him. I am declaring my candidacy for US Senate to run against him in the next election. I will be his hair shirt for the next three years."

Portman, a Republican, was one of 46 senators, who voted against the bipartisan effort.

The vote on the amendment was 54 to 46 in favor of the firearms bill but those 54 yea votes were 6 shy of the 60 votes needed to pass it.

He released a statement on Wednesday regarding his stance on voting against expanding gun background checks.

"I do not believe it would be effective in preventing the kind of heartbreaking loss of life seen in Newtown or in other recent tragic incidents. It does, however, contain several provisions that would make it more difficult for law-abiding Ohioans to exercise their Constitutionally-guaranteed rights," Portman's statement read.

This isn't the first time Hagan has considered running for higher office. In 2000, Hagan challenged incumbent Congressman Jim Traficant in a primary election. Trafficant was later removed from Congress in 2002.

In 2005, Hagan unsuccessfully ran for mayor of Youngstown. However, he has held a seat in the Ohio House of Representatives since 2007 and focuses on local issues involving collective bargaining, oil and natural gas drilling and other environmental plans.

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