Ohio Democrats have been complaining that State Treasurer Josh Mandel -- the Republican challenging Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown -- has been using his state campaign lists and resources in violation of federal election rules. But that doesn't seem to have influenced the Mandel campaign.
After Democrats sent The Huffington Post a video of someone clicking on a Mandel email from his Senate campaign that went to a site that said State Treasurer, HuffPost tried the same experiment.
The result was the same. Additionally, attempting to forward the Mandel email -- which announced his Senate bid -- to Brown campaign spokesman Justin Barasky for comment resulted in a message from Mandel's list-managing service saying that Barasky had been removed from the list.
Barasky said that he signed up for the treasurer's list more than a year ago, not the Senate campaign that sent the email to HuffPost.
Reliable email lists are expensive to create and maintain, and while campaigns are free to share them, they must pay for them, otherwise it counts as an illegal donation. Brown's complaints to the Federal Election Commission -- most recently last month -- said they showed no evidence of a payment from the Senate campaign to the state operation. A Huffington Post review of the most recent filings found no payments, either.
It's not exactly the crime of the century, but Brown's campaign says it's more evidence that Mandel cares only about his next job, not about the rules you're supposed to follow in getting there.
Mandel's campaign did not respond to a request for comment.
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