This week the Strickland campaign moved $400,000 in TV ads from Dayton, Cincinnati, Youngstown and Toledo to the larger markets of Columbus and Cleveland.
Strickland officials say they believe he can still win and have worked to tie Portman to GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump, who Portman has endorsed.
Portman this week called out Trump for his kind words about Russian President Vladimir Putin. In a statement, Portman said he did not “think anyone should be praising Putin, but I do believe that over the last eight years Russia has taken advantage of American weakness around the world, whether it be the Middle East or Ukraine. That’s why we must restore America’s leadership around the world.”
During a foreign policy forum hosted Wednesday by NBC, Trump described Putin as a “leader, far more than our president has been.”
Randy Ludlow of the Columbus Dispatch contributed to this report.