Sherrod Brown Campaign Denounces Josh Mandel For Staffing Treasurer’s Office With Political Cronies

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Sherrod Brown Campaign Denounces Josh Mandel For Staffing Treasurer’s Office With Political Cronies

New Report Reveals Mandel Gave “Young, Inexperienced” Campaign Staffers “High-Ranking Jobs” In Treasurer’s Office

COLUMBUS, OHIO – Today U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown’s campaign held a press conference to denounce absentee “Treasurer” Josh Mandel, who “hired young, relatively inexperienced staffers from his 2010 campaign and gave them high-ranking jobs in the state treasurer’s office,” according to a shocking report by the Dayton Daily News.

During Josh Mandel’s 2010 campaign for Treasurer, he repeatedly stressed the importance of hiring qualified professionals and avoiding cronyism in the Treasurer’s office.

Don’t just take our word for it – watch Josh in his own words.

VIDEO: Josh Mandel on Political Cronies

Why then did Josh staff his office with numerous political cronies, many of whom received significant raises from their previous jobs (hint: some stayed for just weeks or months before returning to far-more-familiar jobs on Mandel’s senate campaign)?

See below for Friends of Sherrod Brown communications director Justin Barasky’s remarks, delivered at this morning’s press conference:

“‘Cronyism is bad no matter what.’ That’s what then State Representative Josh Mandel proclaimed when he ran for Treasurer in 2010. This past Sunday, a piece by the Dayton Daily News reported ‘Mandel repeatedly criticized his opponent in 2010 for appointing politically connected people into key positions.’

“In fact, hiring qualified financial professionals was arguably the most important piece of Mandel’s 2010 campaign platform. Additionally, you’ve no doubt heard Mandel bragging about how qualified and professional his staff is throughout his current campaign for Senate.

“So what exactly constitutes a highly qualified professional in Josh Mandel’s Treasurer’s office?

“Michael Lord made just $13.95 an hour working as a legislative aide to Mandel while Josh was in the statehouse. After following Mandel to the Treasurer’s campaign he went to work for Josh on the Government dime once more. This time instead of being Mandel’s legislative aide he attained the high powered position of Senior Policy Advisory at a salary of $100,000 a year.

“Joe Aquilino also worked on Mandel’s Treasurer’s campaign, and despite being just 26 years old and becoming licensed to practice law the same month Josh Mandel was elected, he was given the senior position of ‘Director of Debt Management’ at a taxpayer funded salary of $90,000 a year, more than three times what he made on Mandel’s Treasurer’s race. Despite the importance of this position, Aquilino left last year for Mandel’s Senate campaign.

“Scott Guthrie was a fundraiser on Mandel’s campaign for Treasurer before landing a $100,000 a year job in the Treasurer’s office as Interim Director of Public Affairs. This was a large increase from Mandel’s campaign. Guthrie left almost immediately to return back to Mandel’s state campaign, and then to his Senate race, once again as a fundraiser.

“Joel Riter, a former legislative aide for Mandel and field staffer on his campaign for Treasurer, made under $30,000 during the campaign. When he was hired at the Treasurer’s office it was at a salary of more than $60,000 a year as the Executive Agency Liasion.

“In 2010 Mandel often mocked an employee in the Treasurer’s office who had once worked at a water park. Well, meet Jacob Dummermuth, who aside from an internship with Josh Mandel’s campaign previously worked part time as a cashier at the Honey Baked Ham company making $7.50 an hour. When it came time to hire staff as Treasurer, I’m sure Josh Mandel stayed away from any former Sea World employees, but managed to bring Jacob on and pay him more than double his old salary despite Dummermuth having not yet graduated from college.

“Dexter Vaughan made just $2,000 on Josh Mandel’s Treasurer campaign as a ‘political consultant,’ but received a whopping $55,000 a year when he was hooked up in the Treasurer’s office as a ‘Policy Aide.’ Vaughan would also go on to leave the government and head to Josh Mandel’s campaign.

“Finally, Seth Metcalf. Seth Was Josh Mandel’s campaign manager in college when Mandel ran for reelection to the office of student President, and was later given the powerful position of general counsel and chief financial officer in the Treasurer’s office. So every time Josh Mandel skips a Board of Deposit meeting for a D.C. fundraiser, it’s alright – his college buddy is running the meeting. After just a few months in the Treasurer’s office, Metcalf received a massive $25,000 raise.

“Remember, just take it from Josh Mandel less than 2 years ago: ‘Cronyism is bad no matter what.’

“Ladies and gentleman, those are Josh Mandel’s words back in 2010 discussing how numerous political hires shows a pattern of cronyism. This will be a rare moment in the race when I will not dispute what Josh Mandel has said. There is a pattern in the Treasurer’s office, and Josh Mandel himself believes it’s political cronyism.”

BACKGROUND

During 2010 Campaign For State Treasurer, Mandel Repeatedly Criticized Kevin Boyce For Appointing Politically Connected People Into Key Positions. In March 2012, The Dayton Daily News reported “Mandel’s hires stand out because of the strong stance the then state representative took against incumbent Democrat Kevin Boyce’s hiring practices during the heated 2010 race for treasurer. Mandel repeatedly criticized Boyce for appointing politically connected people into key slots, and pledged to operate differently if elected to the office that oversees billions of dollars in investments and bond deals.” [Dayton Daily News, 03/31/12]

… And Promised To Operate Differently If Elected. In March 2012, The Dayton Daily News reported “Mandel’s hires stand out because of the strong stance the then state representative took against incumbent Democrat Kevin Boyce’s hiring practices during the heated 2010 race for treasurer. Mandel repeatedly criticized Boyce for appointing politically connected people into key slots, and pledged to operate differently if elected to the office that oversees billions of dollars in investments and bond deals.” [Dayton Daily News, 03/31/12]

Mandel: “I Will Ensure That My Staff Is Comprised Of Qualified Financial Professionals – Rather Than Cronies And Friends.” In March 2012, The Dayton Daily News wrote “Mandel’s hires stand out because of the strong stance the then state representative took against incumbent Democrat Kevin Boyce’s hiring practices during the heated 2010 race for treasurer. Mandel repeatedly criticized Boyce for appointing politically connected people into key slots, and pledged to operate differently if elected to the office that oversees billions of dollars in investments and bond deals. ‘Unlike the current officeholder, I will ensure that my staff is comprised of qualified financial professionals — rather than political cronies and friends — and that investment decisions are based on what is best for Ohioans,’ Mandel said in October 2010 during his first statewide election.” [Dayton Daily News, 03/31/12]

Mandel Hired Six Campaign Staffers To Positions Ranging From Debt Management And Policy Advising To Community Outreach. In March 2012, The Dayton Daily News reported “To see if Mandel was fulfilling his pledge not to hire political friends the Daily News reviewed personnel files and other records from the treasurer’s office. The review showed that Mandel put qualified, experienced staff members in some top positions, but also hired six campaign workers whose average age is 26 and assigned them duties ranging from debt management to policy-advising to community outreach.” [Dayton Daily News, 03/31/12]

Mandel: “Regardless, Cronyism Is Bad.” In October 2010, in an interview with the Dix Editorial Board, Josh Mandel said, “You know regardless, cronyism is bad, and a hallmark of our campaign, one of the main messages we’ve had in our campaign is restoring character and integrity to the treasurer’s office.” [Dix Editorial Board interview, 10/5/10]

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Paid for by Friends of Sherrod Brown