I know this is going to come as a shocker to some of you but it seems that Josh Mandel might be hiding something from the public. Right, I know. You never saw that coming.
According to information released by the Ohio Democratic Party (ODP) multiple public records requests, relating to resumes of 34 staffers, have gone unanswered by the Treasurer’s office since April of 2011.
Recently, reports have surfaced that Mandel has a slight cronyism problem on his hands. Mandel hired numerous campaign staffers to fill high-level positions directly after taking office. Many of these staffers were young and inexperienced but were inexplicably hired into positions with responsibilities far exceeding their skill levels.
According to ODP, in April 2011 the party requested the resumes of 34 staffers Mandel hired after taking office but it took his office over eight months to respond. And when they responded they still did it wrong. ODP says it received 18 discs of unorganized and unrequested information equaling over 41,000 pages including the payment information for every state employee in 2011, but just 12 of the requested resumes.
Days after ODP contended that Mandel was trying to hide public information, Mandel responded with a bizarre letter to the editor in which he said the claims were “blatantly false” and “simply wrong”. Which is strange because not only were ODP claims correct but as of today his office has still not supplied ODP the resumes of the 34 staffers they originally requested in April 2011.
What does this all mean? Mandel is either deliberately hiding the resumes and qualifications of the staffers he hired to positions in his office, or worse, he hired 35 staffers to fill taxpayer funded positions without ever requesting their resumes or conducting formal interviews.
It does not really matter which one is happening because both of them are bad news. Either scenario is an attack on the legitimacy of Mandel’s office and a breach in the trust between his office and the public.
The positions that these staffers were given were paid for by Ohioans. They have an expectation that their tax dollars are going towards hiring the most qualified individuals to take on these jobs. Ohioans do not pay taxes so that politicians can use that money to award political stooges that they like. Which Mandel should understand considering he campaigned on this issue in 2010 and said this then:
“You know regardless, cronyism is bad, and a hallmark of our campaign, one of the main messages we’ve had in our campaign is restoring character and integrity to the treasurer’s office.”
So to review, Mandel is either purposely withholding information because that information would lead to further questions about cronyism in his office or he didn’t collect the resumes for the people he hired in the first place.
I don’t know which one is more likely, but I would not be surprised if there are a bunch of staffers trying to figure out how to make post-dated resumes this week in the Treasurer’s office.