Democrat Tim Ryan’s District Since He Took Office: 25K Manufacturing Jobs Lost, Up to 400% Spike in Drug Deaths

Representative Tim Ryan, a Democrat from Ohio and 2020 presidential candidate, pauses whil
Daniel Acker/Bloomberg/Spencer Platt/Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis via Getty Images

Rep. Tim Ryan’s (D-OH) district has fallen into economic and social despair since he first took office in 2003, jobs reports, population data, and death figures reveal.

Ryan, running against Republican J.D. Vance for Ohio’s open United States Senate seat, has long touted his record of supporting his district’s working and middle class communities. But a collection of data from the region, shared by Vance’s campaign, paints a different picture.

For example, since Ryan took office, the Mahoning Valley area of northeast Ohio has lost nearly 25,000 manufacturing jobs as a result of U.S. free trade policies. Since 2001, two years before Ryan took office, the area’s manufacturing workforce has been cut in half.

A closed factory is shown in downtown East Liverpool, Ohio, on October 24, 2016. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

At the same time, Ryan’s district has seen skyrocketing levels of drug overdose deaths — most now linked to fentanyl — as decades-long job outsourcing propelled Ohio into the spotlight as the face of the nation’s opioid crisis.

From 2005 to 2020, drug overdose deaths in Mahoning County increased by more than 351 percent. In Trumbull County drug overdose deaths have jumped nearly 335 percent, and in Portage County, drug-related deaths have gone up by about 400 percent.

Household incomes in Ryan’s district are lagging behind the rest of Ohio, and the number of Ohioans living in poverty in the area has only gotten worse. In Mahoning County, from 2001 to 2020, the poverty rate increased from 12.7 percent to 15.8 percent.

The same occurred in Trumbull County and Portage County, where poverty increased from 10.6 percent to 15.8 percent and from 8.9 percent to 9.9 percent, respectively.

In response, the population in Ryan’s district has declined significantly since he took office in 2003. In Mahoning County, from 2000 to 2020, the population declined by more than 11 percent and in Trumbull County, the population declined by more than 10 percent.

Globalization of the American economy over the last two decades has been especially devastating for Ohio.

Vance, whose best-selling memoir Hillbilly Elegy is set against a backdrop of the deindustrialized area of Middletown, has run his Senate campaign centered around an economic nationalist vision to revive America’s manufacturing base with tariffs and a rigorous industrial policy; higher wages with a tighter labor market via less immigration; and a fierce social agenda focused on boosting the quality of life for working- and middle-class American households.

The Ohio Senate election takes place on Nov. 8.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at Follow him on Twitter here. 


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