Hopefully everyone had a fun and safe Independence Day celebration!  July 4th is a time to reflect on the founding of our country and is also a time to honor those who have fought to not only create it but defend it over the years.

The US Senate campaign in Ohio has seen its share of candidates touting military support.  The Sherrod Brown campaign is out with a new video that highlights the Senators unwavering support for veterans of our armed forces.  While Josh Mandel is doing the “noun, verb, Marines” routine, interjecting his service as an intelligence specialist in Iraq into almost every campaign conversation.  His communications director Travis Considine even went so far as to pull out the Marines card when asked to comment on a high school photo depicting Josh Mandel in drag appearing to caress another male student dressed in drag:

“Josh didn’t remember it, but it looks like he was joking around for a gag photo in his high school yearbook. Humor has always been an important part of his personality, especially when he used it to keep up morale among his Marines in Iraq. He also thinks it’s important to have a spotter when you’re doing lat pull downs.”

It’s comments like these from the Mandel campaign that leads one to believe his service was a mere resume item Josh needed checked off to maximize his ability to get elected to one office after another in short order.  There’s a certain disingenuous tone to mentioning it so much.

The new Brown video makes the point that it’s important to care about the military after they come home and Sherrod Brown has consistently been on the side of our veterans.  He’s fought for measures to ease the transition back to civilian life, encouraged businesses to hire our vets, and supported measures to increase job training and educational opportunities for America’s veterans.

Veterans of the Iraq War (Josh Mandel notwithstanding) and high ranking Generals have joined in supporting Sherrod by forming Veterans for Sherrod, a group formed in the spring.  Co-Chairs Sam Kindred, a retired Army Brigadier General, and Jeremy Miller, a veteran of the Iraq war have shown not all military support is going to reflexively support the boy wonder in boots.  Brown also received the endorsement of retired Four Star General Johnnie E. Wilson, a 40 year veteran of the United States Army from Lorain, Ohio.

It’s important to remember that you don’t have to be a veteran to support the troops.  Actions speak louder than words and many times the GOP have come up short in their actual legislative support of our military veterans.  Josh Mandel and his crew want us to believe that his boots were made for walking in the US Senate when Sherrod Brown’s penny loafers have already done twice the job Josh only promises to – including support of our military.

Yes, some military families and vets will reflexively choose the boy in the uniform in all those commercials, but if they look closer they’ll see the candidate who really cares about them is the often messy haired guy with his sleeves rolled up.  We shouldn’t be deceived by the boots or the rhetoric.

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