Auto dealer Bernie Moreno steps down from MetroHealth board as he considers possible Senate race


COLUMBUS, Ohio – Bernie Moreno, the Cleveland-area businessman and luxury car dealer, has resigned his post on the MetroHealth board of directors as he considers a possible nomination for the United States Senate.

Moreno’s resignation letter reads like a statement from a political candidate. In it, Moreno wrote that he and his wife were weighing his “political future”, a nod to the possibility that he could run, and said he was stepping down to avoid any potential conflict of interest. .

He also shared an anecdote about the role of his father’s hospitals, who he said was the dean of a medical school in Bogota, Colombia. Moreno moved to the United States as a child.

“Recent events and a disturbing political climate in our country have awakened me to a different but urgent call to service,” the letter said. “There is a healing that must take place in our nation for it to survive.”

Moreno filed his letter on February 16, as first reported by Cleveland Scene. MetroHealth is “grateful for their service,” a spokesperson said. Moreno did not return a message requesting comment.

Moreno is an active Republican donor and has been involved in Cleveland’s civic scene, but has never applied for an elected position. He is known for his vocal interest in blockchain, the technological foundation of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, as well as his outspoken social media presence, where he has at times been criticized for his skeptical comments on restrictions related to cryptocurrencies. coronavirus and other topics.

If Moreno were to enter the race, he would join an overcrowded group of potential Republican candidates, including several from the Cleveland area, a mix of wealthy first-time candidates and elected officials. All are looking to replace incumbent Republican Senator Rob Portman, who surprised political observers last month by announcing he would not stand for re-election in 2022.

The two candidates declared in the race so far are Josh Mandel, a Cleveland area resident and former state treasurer, and Jane Timken, who resigned as president of the Ohio Republican Party early of the month to focus on their campaign.

Mike Gibbons, an investment banker who ran for the Senate primaries in 2018 and lost, and State Senator Matt Dolan, whose family owns the Cleveland Indians, are also likely to flee the area. Cleveland. Gibbons is considered likely to run, while Dolan is interviewing potential campaign staff this week, according to Republican sources, and said he would run if he thought he could run a credible campaign.

Others are considering an offer include a trio of congressmen – Steve Stivers, from suburban Columbus, Mike Turner, from Dayton, and Bill Johnson from Marietta – and Vivek Ramaswamy, a wealthy entrepreneur from the Cincinnati area.

Democrats considering the race include Dr Amy Acton, the former director of the Ohio Department of Health and Niles-area American Tim Ryan.

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