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Yeah. Josh is in.

Though Josh Mandel still maintains that he has not made any official decisions yet, his actions are definitely broadcasting to the political world that he intends to take on Sherrod Brown for Senate in 2012.

A few weeks ago we talked about the buzz that was being created locally and nationally about a Mandel Senate run.

Then, last week, he formed a campaign committee to raise money for a race, while still remaining noncommital.

The filing does not mean Mandel — only five months removed from winning election to the treasurer’s office — has decided to run for Senate, said Anthony Conchel, a spokesman for Mandel.

“It’s still not a formal announcement of candidacy,” Conchel said. “It is obviously a step.”

Now, this week, Mandel has hired the same fundraiser that Senator Jim DeMint uses.

Anthony Conchel, Mandel’s political spokesman, said Mandel’s position hasn’t changed: He’s not made an official decision — nor a final one.

But Laura Van Hove, whose consulting firm has helped such GOP stalwarts as South Carolina U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint, sounds sure that her new client will remain a client.

“Josh Mandel is now being asked by conservatives across Ohio and throughout the country to take on the U.S. Senate’s most liberal member, Sherrod Brown,” she writes in a recent email to supporters. “Josh has never failed to answer the call to duty, and he will not start now.”

Hmmm. Think he’s running?

For all the mocking the Democrats did about Josh’s poll numbers earlier, they sure seem to be taking him seriously now. The ODP has already put out a video criticizing Mandel for not serving a full term as Ohio Treasurer.

*sniff sniff*

Do you smell fear?

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Third Base Politics is an Ohio-centric conservative blog that has been featured at Hot Air, National Review, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, and others.

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