A staffer for Ohio State Treasurer Josh Mandel, who is running against Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, is accused of getting physical with a campaign tracker who was shooting video of Mandel.
In a video from the Ohio Democratic Party, tracker Juan Nino asked Mandel about an endorsement he received from a super PAC called Rev 18, short for Revolution 2018, that was founded by Mike Cernovich, a white nationalist blogger who has suggested date rape is not real.
Cernovich also peddled the “Pizzagate” conspiracy that Democratic operatives tied to Hillary Clinton ran a pedophile ring out of a Washington, D.C., pizza parlor.
Mandel previously tweeted a defense of Cernovich after the Anti-Defamation League criticized him and other so-called white nationalist figures.
In the video, Nino asks Mandel if he will “reject the Rev 18 endorsement” before a staffer blocks his camera. Nino continues to ask if Mandel agrees with Cernovich that date rape is not real.
Erica Nurnberg, Mandel’s campaign spokeswoman, defended the campaign staffer who tried to block Nino’s camera, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported.
“Who knew the Ohio Democrats were more dramatic than the Kardashians,” she said.
Ohio Democratic Party spokesman Jake Strassberger said it was “completely inappropriate for candidates or staffers to get physical with anyone.”
“This is the same type of behavior we saw from Josh in 2012 when he accosted a tracker in an elevator,” Strassberger said. “It would be unacceptable in any other campaign or work setting, but lacking professionalism seems to be a job requirement for Josh’s staff.”
Mandel ran against Brown in 2012 and lost. During that race, Mandel was accused of grabbing the monopod for a tracker’s camera and the Columbus Dispatch verified the incident despite Mandel’s denials.
Since his announcement of wanting a rematch, Mandel has adopted themes similar to President Donald Trump’s campaign. Trump won Ohio in the 2016 presidential campaign.