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Anti-gay Republican candidate slammed by own family loses US senate race

Josh Mandel defeated in Ohio by Democrat Sharrod Smith

Josh Mandel's anti-gay views so upset some of his relatives that they took out a newspaper ad denouncing him in the days leading up to the vote Tuesday (6 November) for US senator from Ohio.

In the end, voters weren't so impressed with the 35-year-old Republican candidate either as he went down in defeat to incumbent Democrat Sherrod Brown.

Mandel, Ohio's state treasurer, was publicly slammed in a full-page ad placed in the Cleveland Jewish News by a group of cousins (by marriage) who took issue with his stances against gay marriage and the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell which prevented gays and lesbians from serving openly in the US military.

The relatives pointed out that 'your cousins, Ellen Ratner and Cholene Espinoza, are among the many wonderful couples whose rights you do not recognize.'

They added: 'It hurts us that you would embrace discrimination against them and countless other loving couples in Ohio and around the country. We are equally distressed by your belief that gay men and women should not be allowed to serve openly in the military. Like you, Cholene spent many years in the armed forces.'

Mandel did not address the ad in his post-election remarks.

'While we came up a little short of victory in this fight that many called a David vs Goliath endeavor, I'm proud of the campaign we ran and the team we put together,' he wrote on his campaign website Wednesday. 'While this battle for the Senate came up short, our mission to change America for the better marches on. I am a dedicated patriot in that fight and will continue working hard to do everything I can to make you proud.'

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