07/08/2014 02:38 pm ET Updated Jul 08, 2014

Rob Portman Leaves Door Open To 2016 Presidential Run


Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) said in a Tuesday interview with The Washington Post that he may run for president in 2016.

“I’m not particularly eager to do it myself, and having been involved in six presidential campaigns, I know what it’s like,” Portman said in the interview. “But if nobody running is able to win and willing to address these issues, then I might have a change of heart.”

“Let’s see what happens, let’s see who runs,” Portman continued. “For the moment, I’m up for reelection in Ohio, so that’s my plan.”

Portman also opined on the challenges facing the GOP in 2016.

“To win a national election, we’ve got to work on fixing the Republican brand, and that’s what I’ve been working on,” Portman said. “We’ve got to be the party of ideas, not the party of no ... The Democrats have successfully mischaracterized Republicans in many instances, and that’s why Mitt Romney had a tough time winning Ohio. They called him a plutocrat without compassion.”

Portman, who was a little more reticent about his 2016 prospects in a March radio interview, was almost chosen as Mitt Romney's 2012 GOP vice presidential running mate before the former Massachusetts governor finally settled on Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).

The interview comes as the GOP chose Cleveland as its host city for the 2016 Republican National Convention on Tuesday.

Portman previously held posts in both Bush administrations and served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1993 to 2005.



Republican 2016 Candidates