“He has not made any official announcement or any official comments because today is Senator Voinovich’s day,” said Portman spokeswoman Caroline Joseph. “Really today is all about Senator Voinovich and his four decades of service to all Ohioans. Rob wanted to express his utmost respect for him (Voinovich).”
Portman chose to praise Voinovich for his service.
“Senator Voinovich is one of the great public servants of our time,” Portman said. “As Assistant Attorney General, State Representative, County Auditor, County Commissioner, Mayor, Lieutenant Governor, Governor, and United States Senator, he has worked tirelessly for the people of Ohio.”
Portman said, “Ohio is a better place because of his principled leadership, passionate advocacy, and his commitment to future generations.”
Portman also took the opportunity to comment on Voinovich’s legacy.
“His countless contributions to our state and to our nation will be felt for many years to come. I have had the privilege of working closely with Senator Voinovich over the years, and I have been honored to call him my friend,” Portman said. “His integrity and unwavering commitment to public service has inspired me and so many others.”
“There may be an announcement later this week from Rob. But it will not be until later this week,” Joseph said. “You’ve seen it and I’ve seen it. He said it out there, he would be interested, if, and only if, Senator Voinovich did decide to retire, he would be interested. He has said that before publicly.”
Ohio Governor Ted Strickland also spoke in glowing terms about Voinovich’s politician career.
“For more than four decades, George Voinovich has devoted his life to representing Ohio citizens at all levels of government. He has earned Ohioans’ trust and respect, and the legacy he leaves will live on for generations to come,” Strickland said. “In this critical time in the history of our state and nation, there is no question that Senator Voinovich will serve his remaining tenure as Ohio’s senior member of the U.S. Senate with the same vigor and dedication to our state that has characterized his entire time in office.”
In making the announcement that he would not run for a third term, Voinovich pledged to continue to serve during the remainder of his term.
“I am grateful for the opportunity that I have had to serve my statehouse district, my county, city, state and nation and feel good about the fact that with the help of some extraordinary people, many of whom are no longer with us,” Voinovich said. “I have made a difference and will, with God’s help and a great team in my Senate office, continue to make a difference during these next two critical years.”
Frank Lewis may be reached at (740) 353-3101 Ext. 232.
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