Editor’s Note: This is part 2 of a two-part series on Republican candidates for the U.S. Senate.
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Six total candidates are seeking the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate, including one write-in candidate. Among them are Josh Mandel, Michael Pryce M.D., and Russell “Rusty” Bliss Jr.
The primary election takes place on March 6.
Josh Mandel (www.joshmandel.com)
Mandel, 34, lives in Beachwood, Ohio. He currently serves as the Treasurer of the State of Ohio, a role he’s held since 2011.
Prior to his current role, he served as State Representative from the 17th Ohio House District, elected in 2006 and 2008.
Mandel is a Marine Corps Reserves veteran who served two tours in Iraq’s Anbar Province. He is a member of the National Association of State Treasurers.
“Creating a business-friendly, pro-growth environment to foster job creation in Ohio and America is the highest priority of our campaign. I strongly believe that common sense tax reforms, the repeal of Obamacare and the elimination of overburdensome agency regulations on small businesses are crucial to the recovery of our state and national economies.” said Mandel.
He adds, “I believe that the economy excels when government gets out of the way and allows businesses and entrepreneurs to do what they do best: creating jobs. I do not believe that the government should be in the business of competing with the private sector to create jobs… This country has become the greatest country in the world due to businesses led by visionaries willing to engage in the free market. President Obama and his close ally Sherrod Brown have led us away from this strength. We must remove the chains placed upon our businesses and let the free market thrive.”
While in the Legislature, Mandel served as the Ranking Member of the Financial Institutions, Real Estate and Securities Committee, and dealt with issues concerning banks, investment firms, pension funds and other financial matters. Previously, as a member of the House Insurance Committee, he participated in the reconstruction of investment oversight for the multi-billion dollar Bureau of Workers’ Compensation investment fund. Additionally, Mandel advocated for exploration of Ohio’s natural resources and he served as Vice-Chairman of the Public Utilities Committee, according to his Web site.
Mandel is a 1996 graduate of Beachwood High School. He holds a bachelor’s degree from The Ohio State University, and graduated from Case Western Reserve University School of Law.
He is married to Ilana Mandel.
Michael Pryce, M.D. (www.michaelpryce.com)
Pryce is 64 and resides in Hudson, Ohio. He is an orthopedic surgeon with Stow-Kent Orthopaedics.
A U.S. Navy veteran, Pryce ran for U.S. Senate in 2010 as a Independent. He is a member of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, 1986-present; president, Marathon Shoe Company; and member of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association and the Experimental Aviation Association; as well as a clinical assistant professor, Orthopedic Surgery, NEOMED Medical School.
Pryce wants to address the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and says he’ll work to abolish the law.
“I am the author of the book ‘Anathema! America’s War on Medicine’ (Trafford Publishing, 2009) and it has drawn me to national attention as a national expert on health care with appearances on ‘Fox & Friends,’ ‘The Fox Strategy Room,’ ‘NBC News’… The health care plan in my book has been touted as one that could be used to replace the PPACA and give Americans real affordable health care,” Pryce says.
He also talks about the economy and jobs. “Loss of jobs is not the problem; it is the result. We need a real world solution to this problem, not just a political gimmick… This country needs an industrial blood transfusion and it needs it now. No jobs program is going to succeed in Ohio at the hands of a United States Senator as my opponents would have you believe. They do not have that kind of power. The Senator from Ohio will have to provide leadership to help the State Government eliminate the two factors that helped drive jobs out of Ohio in the first place.
“Jobs can never return to this country unless two things happen. Meaningful tax elimination on business and industry has to be made… I am talking about a complete elimination of any and all capital gains type taxes on business and private citizens by changing our overall tax structure to a consumption tax.
“The second happening involves federal spending. We cannot cut taxes until we curb the ridiculous spending habits of the United States Government. As long as we give people like Mr. Portman and Mr. Fisher free rein to continue the Washington corruption, then we cannot begin to address jobs.”
Pryce graduated from Field High School in 1965. He has a bachelor’s degree in natural science from the University of Akron; doctor of medicine, Wake Forest University Medical School; and completed a fellowship in hand surgery at Loma Linda University. He is married to Jo Ellen and has two children.
Write-in candidate Russell “Rusty” Bliss Jr. (www.Bliss2012.com)
Bliss, a resident of Willoughby, Ohio, is 43. He’s an airline captain/check airman (instructor) for Mountain Air Cargo/FedEx Feeder Aircraft Operations.
The candidate wants to focus on “keeping our educated young people in Ohio after high school and college.” He says, “Sure, kids can follow the ‘trail of tests,’ then journey off to college for more of the same, then earn a degree; but if we don’t have the jobs to use those degrees, they’ll leave Ohio for work. The majority of those coming from trade/tech schools contribute instantly.”
Bliss favors a smaller government and a public less dependent on government handouts. “We need a smaller, yet effective government that truly puts the people first… We have become a lazy, government-dependent nation full of those who’d rather accept a handout than work to achieve their dreams… We all have the same opportunities within this great nation to make successful lives for ourselves, and the careers by which to do it. Anyone who is not willing to work for and earn his own living, unless unable, should not be dependent on his neighbor to sustain him… That is not what forged the United States of America!”
Further on the topic of jobs, Bliss draws from what he knows. The first aspect of his jobs plan involves aviation. “Ohio is The Aerospace State. Not only is aerospace our nation’s greatest export it is also what made Ohio a leader. This year, Boeing announced they would not redesign the 737 airliner as a new model rather they would re-engine the 737 fleet with updated, more efficient and clean engines… built here in Ohio by General Electric Aviation. Not too far from [there] is an airport in the town of Wilmington. That entire area has been devastated by the departure of Airborne and the airport is just sitting there… I want to work together with Boeing and GE along with the Wilmington Airport Authority to devise a concept that could see Boeing build a facility right here… Not only would the engines be built here, the modification work would be done here as well, bringing thousands of quality jobs to our state now.
The second part is “Revitalize the U.S. Space Program. This instantly adds a welcome boost to the work at NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland… Not only do we support and create jobs back here in Ohio but the effects would be seen nationally.”
And third, “Fire up our steel mills once again. This is a win for the entire Great Lakes Region because of its direct impact on shipping across the Great Lakes. Many states win here, not just Ohio. It’s high time that Cleveland and Youngstown get back to doing what we did best for decades and that’s manufacture quality, U.S. made steel.”
Bliss is a 1986 graduate of Cleveland St. Joseph High School. He is married to Brandy; and has four children, one of whom is deceased.
The winner of the Republican nomination - David Dodt, Donna Glisman, Eric LaMont Gregory, Josh Mandel, Michael Pryce or write-in Russell “Rusty” Bliss Jr. - will square off against an already-determined Democrat candidate in November. U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown’s name will appear alone on the Democratic ballot in March. The incumbent has no competition in the primary election.
Also appearing in the primary election are two write-in Green Party candidates - Joseph Rosario DeMare and Anita Rios. For the Libertarian Party, there is an unchallenged write-in candidate, John Fockler.
No Constitution or Socialist candidates are in the primary election.