Ohio elections chief Jon Husted joins 2018 race for governor

His announcement Sunday at the University of Dayton is being followed by a campaign tour across the state

FILE - In this Nov. 4, 2014, file photo, Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted speaks to supporters at the Ohio Republican Party election night celebration in Columbus, Ohio. Residents in three Ohio counties contend in a lawsuit that the Secretary of State violated their rights when he invalidated ballot proposals they offered that would have restricted development projects related to the gas-drilling technique known as fracking. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File)
In this Nov. 4, 2014 photo, Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted speaks to supporters at the Ohio Republican Party election night celebration in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted is entering the race for Ohio governor.

The Republican from southwest Ohio becomes the second Republican to join the 2018 gubernatorial field in what is expected to be a crowded race to replace GOP Gov. John Kasich, who is term-limited.

His announcement Sunday at the University of Dayton, his alma mater, is being followed by a campaign tour across the state. Stops include Williams and Licking counties, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chillicothe, Washington Court House and Circleville.

The 49-year-old Husted is a former state senator and Ohio House speaker. He’s in his second term as the battleground state’s elections chief, where he’s drawn criticism at times from voting rights advocates.

He joins U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci in seeking the Republican nomination.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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