Josh Mandel, the Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, visited the Repository on Friday to discuss his philosophy behind his jobs plan.
He believes the federal government will create more jobs by getting rid of regulations rather than passing new laws.
“It’s not about new ways to spend taxpayer money,” he said. “I believe the best way to spur the economy is to get Washington out of the way.”
He said businesses have to spend so much money on lawyers and accountants to comply with the rules, they can’t hire more blue-collar workers to make products.
Mandel, the Ohio state treasurer, argued that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s plan to slash emissions of pollutants from power plants will result in the shutting down of power plants around Ohio, costing the jobs of utility workers and making electricity more expensive, resulting in manufacturers laying off workers.
Justin Barasky, a spokesman for the re-election campaign of U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Avon, says Mandel is exaggerating the number of shutdowns that would occur under the plan.
“This is a false choice between creating jobs and having children breath clean air that’s not going to kill them,” Barasky said.
Mandel, who lives in Beachwood, said the U.S. Department of Labor has issued a regulation that would prevent farmers’ teen children from working on their family farms.
The department announced in April that in response to public comment, it was withdrawing a proposed rule prohibiting children under age 16 from working in potentially hazardous farm jobs.
Mandel said a U.S. EPA regulation would treat spilled milk the same as spilled oil that would “put family farms out of business in America ... because they’d be paying ridiculous fines because of spilled milk in their dairy farms.”
The Brown campaign pointed to a Politifact article that said a recent EPA regulation explicitly excludes spills of properly pasteurized milk from oil spill rules.
Mandel also said Brown opposes the drilling of gas and oil on federal land.
Barasky says Brown supports such drilling as long as it’s environmentally responsible.
Mandel declined to answer questions about the $5,000 contributions to his campaign from several employees of Suarez Corporation Industries in Jackson Township that are being investigated by the FBI to determine whether someone was trying to funnel to the campaign more than the maximum allowed amount.
Mandel declined to discuss his relationship with Suarez's president,
Benjamin Suarez, whether the FBI has interviewed Mandel or his staff and
whether his campaign solicited the contributions.
“We can get you the statement we put out. That was our final statement on it,” said Mandel, who repeated he would be glad to provide the statement.
Page 2 of 2 - His campaign later provided a copy of the letter it apparently sent to the
Suarez employees who donated. It said that while "we have no reason to be
concerned with the contribution, but out of an abundance of caution and
until the investigation is complete," the campaign was going to refund the
contributions, which totaled more than $100,000. (An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that the Mandel campaign failed to provide a statement on the FBI investigation. A reporter
didn't realize that the letter had been sent as an attachment to an email from the Mandel campaign.)