Well, its March and we still don’t have a declared GOP contender to take on Sherrod Brown. Rep. Jim Jordan had been the main rumor for awhile, but as time passes, he seems to indicate more and more that he is content to remain in the House. For some reason, one polling firm even floated Drew Carey’s name out there.
However, the hot name for the last month or so has been Josh Mandel.
Josh has served 2 terms in the Ohio House, is an Iraq war veteran, and currently serves as state Treasurer. He destroyed Kevin Boyce, winning 80 of 88 counties.
Josh is a solid conservative, both fiscally and socially. He has the backing of influential conservatives like Erick Erickson of Redstate.com, who says there are very few Senate races that excite him in 2012, but if Josh runs, Ohio is one of them.
Josh spoke at CPAC this year, and has also been urged to run by conservative columnist Hugh Hewitt, as well as many Republicans.
So what does Josh say? He has stayed non-committal, and said that he hasn’t ruled it out. Then this post hit the Columbus Dispatch Daily Briefing Blog today, saying that Mandel is leaning towards a run and will make an announcement “this spring”.
Later today, when asked, Josh still avoided the question.
The Democrats are already knocking him. From the Dispatch post:
Seth Bringman, spokesman for the Ohio Democratic Party, chided the potential Mandel candidacy: “The best they can do is a candidate who has spent 71 days as treasurer and somehow thinks he’s ready for higher office.”
They tweeted later:
Mandel only been in office for 71 days & already looking for his next job… but even Drew Carey beats him in the polls
Aside from the obvious irony that Barack Obama waited about as long to run for POTUS, don’t let them fool you. This is very bad news for them. They would much rather face someone else who had been rumored to want the job.
Because if Mandel runs against Brown, its going to be a race between a young, Ohio State University and CWRU law graduate who served two tours in Iraq, versus a Yale hippie who is the most liberal member of the Senate.
I like that matchup.