Sunday, January 29, 2012

Mandel: Does money-raising trump all else?

IT'S GOOD TO note that Josh Mandel is taking a break from his ubiquitous fund-raising to speak at that Akron Press Cub luncheon on March 1. Mandel, the rookie Ohio Treasurer who has decided he would rather be a U.S. Senator, had put off an earlier Press Club invitation with word that he was "too busy".

(Full disclosure: Although I had long been active as a Club officer and chaired the luncheon programs for too many years, I am no more than a garden variety member today with no official duties - NONE! For that, I and maybe a few of the members today are quite satisfied.)

Now, back to our state treasurer pro tem, and probably longer. So far as I can tell, his greatest strength is raising campaign money, wherever it might raise its ugly head.

To this point, the Associated Press recently noted that one of Mandel's responsibilities as treasurer is to preside as chairman over the Ohio Board of Deposit, the group that decides where to deposit state money. Hold it right there.

The AP reported that Mandel has yet to attend a single meeting, earning him the claim to be the first treasurer in Ohio history to ignore his role on the board. Moreover, he missed the last meeting because he was fund-raising in Washington. Obviously we can't count him to be a multi-tasker.

Well, to take a little of the edge off his absence, he has boasted of high credit ratings for certain state portfolios. But as the Columbus prime blogger, Plunderbund, notes, the porfolios have always enjoyed such glowing ratings.

It does appear that Republican Mandel, who is challenging Sen. Sherrod Brown, the Democrat, will have loads to talk about at the Press Club. Do you think there's a chance that somebody will raise a question or two?