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Ohio Treasurer Boyce earns a full four-year term in office

Published: Tue, October 19, 2010 @ 12:00 a.m.

When a politician appeals to the basest instincts of a segment of the population that deserves to be repudiated, he should be called out. That’s what we’re doing with the Republican nominee for Ohio treasurer, Josh Mandel. A campaign television commercial that aired for several weeks was unmistakably bigoted, despite what Mandel, a state representative from Lyndhurst, says.

He had the chance during his interview with The Vindicator editorial board to apologize or distance himself from the commercial aimed at state Treasurer Kevin Boyce, who has been in the position since January 2009, and he did neither.

Rather than provide the details of the TV ad, which we find insulting, we would urge fair-minded readers to access it on the Internet and judge for yourselves.

Mandel’s win-at-any-cost strategy is, unfortunately, becoming much more commonplace than is good for our national political discourse. Issues are giving way to personal attacks. That must stop.

On Nov. 2, Ohioans can deliver a strong message about the kind of politics they want by electing Democrat Boyce — he was appointed to the position by Gov. Ted Strickland after Richard Cordray left to become attorney general — to a full four-year term. The incumbent’s record in office justifies such support.

The most compelling reason to let the former Columbus city councilman continue as the state’s chief investment officer is that he has been a good steward of taxpayers dollars. It is a major accomplishment that the state treasury did not lose one dime of public dollars during what has been one of the most challenging periods in the nation’s economic history. The recession, which began in late 2008, created havoc. Investments of public dollars took a major hit in many states, but not in Ohio.

Public pension funds have been most vulnerable, with many states reporting major losses, but Boyce has kept a tight rein on the five funds he oversees. Indeed, as a result of the investment strategy that he has adopted, the treasurer’s office saved Ohio retirees $29.2 million.

Safeguarding tax dollars

In explaining his philosophy as Ohio’s investment chief, Boyce told The Vindicator’s editorial board he is committed to cutting government costs, wants to help create and save Ohio jobs and safeguard taxpayers’ money.

“I directed my administration to use private sector best practices that have earned $300 million in new investment income for Ohio,” he said in a questionnaire sent to him by the newspaper.

In an effort to get the best deal for the investment of public dollars, Boyce has created a competitive bidding process for banking contracts. That has resulted in millions of dollars being saved.

Rather than challenging the incumbent’s record in office, Republican Mandel has focused on the hiring practices and supposed dissension within the ranks. In both cases, newspaper investigations have shown that the allegations are without foundation.

It would have been beneficial to the political process had the challenger built his campaign on showing how he would do a better job than the incumbent. The Vindicator urges the election of Kevin Boyce to a full term — to strike a blow for good governance and for fair, honest political campaigning.

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