NILES, Ohio (WKBN) — Democrat Senate candidate Tim Ryan embarked on a tour of Ohio and make a stop in his hometown of Niles to talk with Valley Locals.

Attendees greeted Ryan with cheers of his slogan, “Workers First” as he arrived.

He shared his personal commitment to union workers in his speech.

“My grandfather was a steel worker, my great-grandfather was a steel worker,” Ryan said.

Ryan said when he first ran for state Senator 22 years ago, he made a commitment to work hard for Ohioans.

On Saturday he made a new promise as he shared his disagreement with a Democrat consultant who brought up investing heavily in states with higher college graduation rates.

“Are we going to completely abandon working people? I will absolutely go to the mat on this one against some of the national Democrats. I absolutely promise you that,” Ryan said.

He believes taking care of all workers is vital because every job is important in the United States economy.

“Do you remember when the pandemic hit, it was like, ‘Essential workers, essential workers, we’ve got to take care of essential workers.’ We’re about one week in, we found out everyone in the damn country is an essential worker,” Ryan said.

Ryan said while he focuses on supporting all workers he wants to see the country come together in peace.

“I think it starts with gratitude, I think we are in such a predicament here. Our culture in the United States, the fighting, we collectively have got to get us out of this mess. No one is going to come in and save us,” Ryan said.