Outside groups spend $640K in Ohio GOP congressional primary

COLUMBUS (AP) — A Republican congressional primary in northeast Ohio pitting a conservative state lawmaker against a former pro football player is attracting big money from national groups.

Rep. Christina Hagan and Anthony Gonzalez, a former NFL wide receiver, are running for the 16th District seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci.

The Columbus Dispatch reports outside groups have invested over $640,000 into the race, most of it favoring Gonzalez.

Business-friendly groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and CLA, a dark-money group that doesn’t disclose donors, support Gonzalez. Supporting Hagan are ultra-conservative groups, including Drain the Swamp and the House Freedom Fund, a PAC linked to Republican U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan, of Urbana.

Conservative Leadership PAC, a group funded by Ferragon Corp., Gonzalez’s father’s Cleveland-based steel company, is opposing Hagan.

Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com