Monday, July 23, 2012 at 4:06 PM
U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown got an endorsement last week that he hopes will help him defeat Republican challenger Josh Mandel this fall. Ohio Public Radio's Jo Ingles reports.
The head of the Ohio Fraternal Order of Police says the vote to endorse U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown for re-election wasn’t even close. Jay McDonald says FOP delegates voted 310 to 5 to endorse Brown. And one big motivating factor—Brown supported police in the effort to repeal the controversial collective bargaining law at the ballot box last year.
MCDONALD: “When we fought to protect every single law enforcement officer in the state of Ohio from the evils that were Senate Bill 5 and Issue 2, Senator Brown had our back. And now we will have his.”
McDonald says the FOP hasn’t endorsed a Democrat for U.S. Senate in 24 years. But the organization has endorsed Democrats in other races. Back in 2010, the organization endorsed former Democratic Governor Ted Strickland, who lost a narrow election to current Republican Governor John Kasich. McDonald says a lot has changed between then and now.
MCDONALD: “What we learned between the election of Governor Kasich and November of this year is that politics matter and elections matter. And we can no longer go and make decisions that are not in the best interests of families and our profession. And our members learned that lesson.”
McDonald says the police union has built a massive grass roots organization during the past couple of years. He says it will be in full force for Brown. And the Senator thinks that will help him win.
BROWN: “We are going to do very well with rank and file police officers, their families and their friends. And I think people are paying attention this way.”
But one fact can’t be ignored. This U.S. Senate race has already broken the record for being the most expensive in Ohio history. Millions of dollars are being donated by anonymous donors through political action committees.
Brown’s Republican Opponent, State Treasurer Josh Mandel, did not comment on tape, but in a written statement said he has a tremendous amount of respect for the men and women who keep Ohio’s communities safe and answer emergency calls. The campaign further says regardless of any endorsement, Mandel will always advocate for first responders as United States Senator.
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