On the same day that reports surfaced that Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel (R) does not have the resumes for 34 staff members he appointed, state Democrats filed their eighth request for the documents.
Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern held a press conference Thursday morning calling on Mandel to release the resumes, which the party has been requesting for more than a year. A report in the Toledo Blade, quoted Mandel's spokesman saying that the office does not have 34 resumes on file for staffers hired during the 2010 transition.
"Josh owes it to Ohioans to come clean," Redfern said.
Mandel is the Republican nominee against U.S. Sen Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio).
The staff resumes became a point of contention in the Senate race after the Dayton Daily News reported in March that Mandel awarded several top spots to political aides and personal friends, along with a Huffington Post report that Mandel sent his debt management director to an entry-level class on the subject.
Democrats have been formally requesting the resumes for 60 staffers since April 2011, requests that have been alternately denied, ignored and in one instance, responded to with the release of state payroll records. Last week, Mandel sent the party a total of 28 resumes, including 12 previously sent, days after Mandel had written a letter to the editor of an online news site in Ohio saying that his office was cooperating with Democrats.
During his 2010 campaign, Mandel said he would hire on merits and accused former Treasurer Kevin Boyce (D) of cronyism.
In an article in the Toledo Blade, treasurer's office spokesman Seth Unger, said that the office does not have every resume on file, noting that the ones received during the 2010 transition period are not in the office.
"We have given the Ohio Democratic Party every resume that they have requested which the Treasurer's office has in its records. The resumes of individuals who applied, interviewed, and were hired prior to the Treasurer taking office were never brought into office. The Treasurer's office is unable to produce records that it does not have in its possession," Unger said to the Blade.
Unger did not return messages left by the Huffington Post on his office and cell phones for comment.
"Josh Mandel is either lying and deliberately hiding the resumes, or worse, he carelessly awarded taxpayer-funded jobs," Redfern said Thursday.
The transition issue has been discussed in Ohio in recent years, in connection to resumes gathered by Gov. John Kasich (R) during his 2010 transition. Kasich said in November 2010 that he would release all resumes gathered by his transition team after he took office.
"Ultimately, I am going to lose this battle," Kasich said at the time. "I've tried to figure out a way how to protect these folks, and it is clear from Supreme Court rulings, at least at this point, I'm not going to win."
In an occasionally snarky letter addressed to treasurer's office general counsel Seth Metcalf requesting the resumes, Redfern also accuses Metcalf in the matter.
"I can't help but notice that your name is one of the resumes that we have requested multiple times yet it has not been included in correspondence from the Treasurer's office. What does it say when the General Counsel and Chief Financial Officer of the Treasurer's office repeatedly responds to public requests, which include a request for his resume, yet does not feel compelled to include his resume?" Redfern wrote. "It seems to me that attorney would be either one of the most incompetent attorneys working for the State of Ohio or an attorney set on deliberately violating Ohio law."