By Wayne Gates
Ohio State Treasurer and Republican U.S. Senate candidate Josh Mandel visited Brown, Adams and Scioto counties on July 5.
He met with supporters at the Country Inn in Georgetown and at the Wayside Inn in West Union.
He then attended a meeting on the prescription drug problem in Portsmouth.
Mandel was joined in Brown and Adams county by State Rep. Danny Bubp.
"Josh Mandel is a real American hero. Josh and I served in Iraq together. He did two tours as a Combat Infantryman in the United States Marine Corps. He is the real deal. I have so much admiration for that young man and I am working hard to see that he is elected as the next Senator from the state of Ohio", Bubp said in West Union.
Following his remarks to supporters at the Wayside nn, Mandel sat for an exclusive interview with The Brown County Press.
"I've never lived in Washington, I've never worked in Washington and I want to go there to change it", said Mandel when asked about how he contrasted to Democrat Incumbent Sherrod Brown.
"Sherrod Brown has been in politics since the Nixon Administration and he's part of the problem in Washington."
He added that Brown's voting record was out of step with the values of Brown and Adams county.
When asked about legislative priorities, Mandel replied "My main focus will be jobs, jobs and jobs. I think leaders on the local state and national level need to be focused on economic development."
Mandel said part of that strategy would be creating a better regulatory and tax environment for farmers, manufacturers and small business owners.
Mandel then turned toward the national debt.
"We are trillions of dollars in debt right now", Mandel said.
"If Ohio families have to live within a balanced budget, and small business need to balance their budgets, our leaders in Washington should have to do the same thing."
Mandel noted that it has been three years since a budget had been passed in the U.S. Senate, which is controlled by Democrats.
Mandel then said he was prepared to make difficult decisions regarding in entitlement spending.
"I'm going to do everything I can to protect Social Security and Medicare, but at same time I'm going to a fiscal conservative and reflect the fiscal conservative values of the state of Ohio."
When asked what he wanted voters to know about Josh Mandel, he replied "That I'm going to change Washington. I have the backbone of a Marine who has done two tours in Iraq, I am the grandson of blue collar workers who appreciated hard work and I'm not going to be pushed around by political bosses of either party. My bosses will be the people of the state of Ohio."