Ohio Democratic Senate candidate Rep. Tim Ryan said Tuesday that Americans need to “kill and confront” what he asserted is an “extremist” movement within the Republican Party.
“The Democrats aren’t right on everything. And I’m willing to sit down and have conversations about how we can move out of this age of stupidity and into an age of reconciliation and reform,” Ryan said during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
“Some of those answers will come from Republicans, not the extremists that we are dealing with every single day, we’ve got to kill and confront that movement, but working with normal mainstream Republicans, that’s going to be really, really important,” he said.
His comments echo those of President Joe Biden, who came under fire earlier this month after delivering a speech at Independence Hall in Philadelphia in which he insisted Donald Trump and “MAGA Republicans” are “a threat to this country.”
“As I stand here tonight, equality and democracy are under assault. We do ourselves no favor to pretend otherwise,” Biden said. “There’s no question that the Republican Party today is dominated, driven, and intimidated by Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans. And that is a threat to this country.”
The president’s comments were denounced by Republicans, who accused him of demonizing the 70 million Americans who supported former President Trump in the 2020 presidential election. In the days following his address, Biden clarified that he does not believe most Trump voters are extremists, insisting he was only condemning Republican Party office-holders and elected representatives.
Biden said that those who would use violence for “political purposes” or those who refuse to accept the outcome of free and fair elections are the ones who threaten the country.
Ryan made his remarks Tuesday after highlighting his record as “one of the most bipartisan members of Congress.” He has attempted to portray himself as a centrist in the race against Republican candidate J.D. Vance, a venture capitalist and best-selling author of “Hillbilly Elegy.” Vance is endorsed by Trump
Polls show a tight race in Ohio, where Vance has led Ryan by an average of 2.3 percentage points over the last 30 days or so, according to RealClearPolitics. A USA Today Network Ohio and Suffolk University poll released Monday found Ryan leading Vance 46.6% to 45.6%, within the poll’s 4.4 percentage point margin for error.
According to the poll, 54% of likely voters disapprove of President Joe Biden’s job performance, while just 41.8% approve.
Ryan has distanced himself from the unpopular president, suggesting to a local radio station last week that Biden should not run for president in 2024 and that it is “time for some generational change.”