Is Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan, a rising star in the Democratic Party, getting an early jump on 2020?
Ryan is scheduled to visit New Hampshire, an obligatory stop for those testing the waters for a presidential run, in August, as he travels the country speaking to local Democrats and campaigning for others.
Ryan will speak at the New Hampshire Young Democrats’ summer cookout on Aug. 16, WMUR reported. He is also scheduled to visit Alabama, Kentucky, Indiana and West Virginia.
Visiting the state that hosts the first presidential primary is the latest step in Ryan’s rising profile after his failed attempt to challenge House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.
Asked about whether the trip confirms that he’s considering running for president in 2020, Ryan replied, “Shaping the national debate is on my radar, and using the bullhorn that I have and that got bigger after I ran against leader Pelosi.”
“The country needs a voice from a place like Youngstown, and our party needs to figure out how to get working-class voters back,” he added.
Despite his leadership bid not gaining traction earlier this year, it did elevate Ryan’s profile amid grumbling that Democrats needed younger leadership at the top. Ryan has stumped for Democrats across the country like Archie Parnell in South Carolina’s 5th Congressional District’s special election last month. He also campaigned for Iowa’s lone Democratic Rep. Dave Loesback.
Ryan criticized his party’s leadership for not having a clear agenda.
“When you have the majority party literally trying to take health care away from 22 million people, it’s time to fight, and you’ve got to fight,” he said. “But I do think people do want the Democrats to show a positive vision for the country.”
Ryan recently passed on running for Ohio’s open governor’s seat in 2018.