A Rising GOP Star

Two blogs we highly regard - Powerline and Jewish Current Issues (JCI) - highlight today the budding career of a young Republican who has made quite a splash in his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio; Josh Mandel.

Given the upcoming July4th holiday, we would also like to join the chorus and sing some praise for this young former Marine who is camapaigning  to win reelection to the state Senate.
He served his nation as a Marine and has been serving his constituents as a State Senator. Now he hopes to serve Ohioans in the US Congress.

His resume is outstanding, as our friend Rick Richman over at JCI notes:  

Mandel is running for Congress, having served as an Intelligence Specialist in the Marine Corps Reserves, after graduating first in his class from Marine Corps Boot Camp and first in his class from Marine Corps Intelligence School. He has served two tours in Iraq, where he operated throughout the Al Anbar Province. During both tours, he received the Navy & Marine Corps Achievement Medal for "superior performance of his duties." 

 (Rick also has a video of a speech Mandel recently gave).     

Powerline picks up a story written by journalist Joel Mowbray on Mandel:  

Given that he's a Republican in a two-to-one Democrat district in the Cleveland area, Mandel will need to give a lot more sterling speeches -- and raise another $400,000 -- to stay in his current job.

While Mandel could give almost any speaker a run for his money, the secret to his winning a state representative seat two years ago was knocking on almost 20,000 doors -- wearing through three pairs of shoes in the process. But with the GOP having a razor-thin four seat majority in the Ohio House, Mandel will be facing a tidal wave of cash from his opponent, the state Democratic party, and independent political groups, including so-called "527s."

If Mandel survives this November, expect to hear a lot more about him. Not only does he give a "world-class" speech, but he already has an impressive legislative track record. In his first (and only) term, he introduced Iran divestment legislation, and he successfully led the effort to force Ohio's massive pension funds to stop investing in companies that do business in Iran.

A fuller appreciation of Josh Mandel's career and plans can be found on his website.

Ohio is a crucial state for the Republican party and promises to be so in the Presidential election in November. The state is headed by a popular Democratic Governor and the Democratic party is pouring resources into the state-recognizing its importance to both Barack Obama and John McCain.

Mandel faces tough odds-but then again he always has and he has always risen to the challenge. We hope he continues to do so.