Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, a candidate for the GOP U.S. Senate nomination in 2018, signed a term-limit pledge at a press conference in Columbus Monday promising to serve only two 6-year terms if he is elected. He also called for Congress to pass a constitutional amendment to limit members of the United States Senate to two 6-year terms and members of the United States House of Representatives to three 2-year terms.
“If we’re going to empower taxpayers, if we’re going to give the people the power to hold politicians accountable, we need to make sure that politicians can not spend their entire adult life in Washington, D.C.,” Mandel said.
“So today I am excited to make an announcement that I am signing a pledge to institute term limits in Washington, and even if these politicians in Washington refuse to do it, I’m going to lead by example. I’m going to volunteer to implement term limits to make sure they apply to myself,” he continued.
Mandel’s pledge was a shot across the bow at incumbent Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) who “about 20, 25 years ago . . . campaigned on term limits,” Mandel said.
Brown has served in the United States Senate for two 6-year terms and is currently running for his third term in the 2018 election. Prior to his election to the United States Senate in 2006, Brown served for seven 2-year terms in the United States House of Representatives.
“It was 1992. 25 years ago. Sherrod Brown campaigned on term limits. He told the voters that he pledged to only stay in Washington for 12 years. And then, miraculously, after he got to Washington, he’s changed his mind, and he’s been in Washington for 25 years,” the Ohio Treasurer added.
Mandel and Brown may find themselves in a general election rematch of their 2012 battle, which Brown won by a 51 percent to 45 percent margin.
At his Columbus press conference on Monday, Mandel returned to the populist themes that he advanced during his 2012 campaign.
“I think voters are sick of politicians like Sherrod Brown and others who say one thing to the voters and then do something else. I also think they’re sick of politicians like Sherrod Brown, who went to Washington to do good, and then stayed in Washington to do well,” Mandel said:
Do well for himself. Do well for his cronies. Do well for his lobbyist buddies.
He got addicted to the trappings of the office. He got addicted to the black tie dinners and the cocktail parties, and he forgot where he came from.
Mandel hit Brown hard on his liberal voting record, which does not represent Ohio values, he said.
“Sherrod Brown’s voting record is 97 percent with Elizabeth Warren. Elizabeth Warren represents Massachusetts. We represent Ohio. We don’t want Massachusetts values or San Francisco values represented here in Ohio. We want Midwest values represented here,” Mandel noted.
“Somewhere in his 25 years in Washington, Sherrod Brown lost his way. But it started when he broke his pledge to the voters [on term limits],” Mandel concluded.
You can watch the press conference here:
Nick Tomboulides, Executive Director of U.S. Term Limits, joined Mandel at the press conference.
“The American people are tired of business as usual in Congress. We’re looking for leaders who will fight for term limits. By signing the U.S. Term Limits pledge, Josh Mandel is giving a voice to all Americans who want real change in Washington,” Tomboulides said.
Brown has little opposition in the Democratic primary. Mandel, who announced in December, is currently the only major candidate in the GOP primary, though U.S. Rep. Pat Tiberi (R-OH) and Governor John Kasich have been rumored to be considering the race.
“In a recent poll of 1,352 Ohio voters, nonpartisan research firm Gravis Marketing [found] 32 percent approving [Sherrod Brown’s] job performance, 36 percent disapproving, and 32 percent uncertain,” the research firm reported in a May 3 press release.
That same poll shows Mandel leading Brown by 3 percent, and Tiberi trailing Brown by 2 percent, though with a 2.7 percent margin of error.
Gravis also “asked how Brown would fare against two possible Republican opponents.”
Josh Mandel had the support of 45 percent, while 42 percent supported Brown and 13 percent were unsure. But Republican Pat Tiberi pulled 41 percent to Brown’s 43 percent, with 16 percent unsure. Because the margin of error was 2.7 percent, however, Mandel has only a slight lead over Brown, while the race between Brown and Tiberi is too close to call.
The state of Ohio, a key swing state in the 2016 Presidential election, looks to be a tumultuous political battleground in 2018 for the gubernatorial campaign as well as the U.S. Senate campaign.
The same Gravis Marketing poll that shows incumbent Sen. Sherrod Brown trailing GOP Senate hopeful Mandel and slightly leading GOP Senate hopeful Tiberi also “found that 49 percent had a favorable opinion of President Donald Trump, while 43 percent have an unfavorable opinion and 8 percent are not sure. Republican Governor John Kasich had less favorable numbers, with 42 percent approval, 35 percent disapproval, and 23 percent unsure.”
As for the 2018 gubernatorial race to succeed term-limited Gov. John Kasich, a Republican, Gravis found “31 percent of Republican primary voters chose Attorney General Mike DeWine. Forty percent were undecided. Jon Husted, Mary Taylor, and Jim Renacci polled at 14 percent, 10 percent, and 6 percent, respectively.”
“Among Democratic primary voters, 67 percent were undecided. Betty Sutton had the support of 13 percent, Joe Schiavoni, 12 percent, and Connie Pillich, 8 percent,” Gravis concluded.
Not included in the Gravis Marketing poll, but a potential Democratic candidate for governor is Richard Cordray, the beleaguered director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and an Ohio native.
The Gravis Marketing poll was conducted “from April 27 through May 2, 2017, by using interactive voice responses and online panels of cell phone users. The results were weighted by voting patterns overall and by the demographic makeup of voters in the party primaries.”