Former President Donald Trump plans to hold a rally Saturday night in Delaware County, Ohio, in an attempt to propel Hillbilly Elegy author J.D. Vance to victory in the state's May 3 Republican Senate primary, Fox News and The Hill report.
Trump endorsed Vance, who in 2016 expressed concern that Trump could become "America's Hitler," on Friday after Vance's opponents spent days imploring Trump not to intervene in the race, Politico reported.
A Trafalgar Group poll conducted before Trump endorsed the venture capitalist and memoirist showed Vance in second place, trailing former Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel by five points. A poll conducted on Monday and Tuesday by a pro-Vance super PAC showed him leading Mandel 25-18.
Ohio Senate primaries use a first-past-the-post system, meaning that whoever receives the most votes will advance to the general election without having to win a runoff. "There's no runoff here. And if you've got five candidates splitting up the vote, it becomes easier. And if this was part of Trump's calculation, it was a smart calculation," University of Virginia Center for Politics Director Larry Sabato told Fox News.
Since receiving Trump's endorsement, Vance's campaign has received an influx of cash, which it will likely need to spread the word in the less than two weeks before the primary. "Ideally, you would have had a month for this thing, but that's not the case," one Ohio GOP strategist told The Hill. "So, flood the zone."