Incumbent Congressman Brad Wenstrup will face Jim Lewis in the 2016 Republican primary on March 15.
Before entering the Congress, Wenstrup, a Doctor of Podiatry, had a private practice in the Cincinnati area. In 1998, he accepted an officer’s commission in the U.S. Army Reserve Medical Corps. He deployed for a year of active duty in Iraq in 2005, where he served as a combat surgeon. Wenstrup continues to serve in the Army Reserve as a Lieutenant Colonel.
He was first elected in 2012 to represent Ohio’s 2nd Congressional District. He successfully ran for re-election to the U.S. House in 2014 garnering 66% of the vote. If he is successful in his primary bid he will be challenged in the fall by the winner of the Democratic primary Russ Hurley, Ronny Harrison Richards or William Smith
According to Ballotpedia, Wenstrup is one of the most reliable Republican votes, meaning he can be considered a safe vote for the Republican Party in Congress.
He currently serves on the Armed Services Committee in the Subcommittee on Readiness; the Veterans’ Affairs Committee as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity, and in the Subcommittee on Health; the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Subcommittee on Department of Defense Intelligence and Overhead Architecture, and the Subcommittee on Emerging Threats.
According to the website GovTrack, Wenstrup missed only 16 of 1,752 roll call votes from January 2013 to September 2015. This amounts to 0.9 percent, which is better than the median of 2.2 percent among current representatives as of September 2015.
Wenstrup’s commitment to active participation in Congress is demonstrated in a recent bill he brought to the Congressional floor called the “Do Your Job Act” which, if passed, would deny pay to the members of both houses if they fail to do the work they were elected to do.
“If the House members don’t do their job, they shouldn’t be paid, and if the Senate doesn’t do their job, they shouldn’t be paid,” Wenstrup told the Defender, “Basically, the bill states that if Congress doesn’t move forward, create a budget, and do the necessary work on appropriations bills, and bring them to the floor, we don’t get paid. It’s an important part of what we do, and I think the American people are being cheated if we don’t go through the process.”
Wenstrup has been widely endorsed across Ohio’s 2nd District. “I have received endorsements ranging from the Ohio Farm Bureau to the Fraternal Order of Police, and the Hillsboro Times Gazette to Cincinnati Right to Life, I appreciate the wide-range of support and confidence in sending me back to Congress.”
The Hillsboro Times-Gazette said of Wenstrup, “His philosophy is a good match for the people of southern Ohio, from social issues to national security to fiscal responsibility. He is an accessible member of the House of Representatives who listens to concerns and follows through on constituent services. He is a frequent presence across the sprawling district.”