Mandel, who represents the 17th Ohio House District, is running for state treasurer, which is currently held by Democrat Kevin L. Boyce. Both Mandel and Boyce are running unopposed in the primary scheduled for May 4. The only other candidate so far is Libertarian Matthew P. Cantrell.
Mandel, 32, is currently serving in his second term in the Ohio House. He said he decided to run for state treasurer because of his background in the area of bank and public finance issues in the House. He said the state treasurer is essentially the chief financial officer for the State of Ohio and should be the economic driver and policy leader for the state.
Mandel also laid out his personal approach to politics.
“I want you to know I not only campaign as a conservative, but I govern as a conservative as well,” he said. “I don’t care how the political winds are blowing. I don’t care what the political pressures are. I have a core set of values and a core set of principles by which I live my life and by which I make decisions down at the Statehouse.”
Mandel then listed three commitments he said he would uphold. He said he would always be honest, always be accessible and that he would not be outworked.
Also during the Lincoln Day dinner, the three Republicans vying for the Sixth U.S. House District seat currently held by U.S. Rep. Charlie Wilson, D-St. Clairsville, each spoke briefly to the crowd gathered at Rio Grande. Donald Allen of Youngstown, Bill Johnson of Poland and Richard Stobbs of Dillondale were given three minutes apiece to make a campaign pitch.
State Sen. John Carey, R-Wellston, was also in attendance. He is running for the 87th Ohio House seat currently held by Clyde Evans, R-Rio Grande. Evans in turn is running for the 17th Senate District seat Carey has occupied for the past two terms. Evans was not able to attend the Gallia event and was represented by his daughter, Sarah Evans Moore, who read a letter from Evans.
Gallia County commission candidates Harold Montgomery and David Smith also addressed the gathering. Both men have held county commission seats in the past and are squaring off in the May primary.
Other Gallia County GOP officeholders who addressed the crowd included Court of Common Pleas Judge D. Dean Evans and County Auditor Larry Betz. Representatives for gubernatorial and lieutenant gubernatorial candidates John Kasich and Mary Taylor, U.S. Senate candidate Rob Portman, state attorney general candidate Mike DeWine and state auditor candidate Dave Yost also spoke briefly to the group.