In a recent campaign ad, Ohio Republican Senate Candidate Josh Mandel is seen attacking a familiar target.
“Most people think Washington is broken but really it’s just a rigged system,” he said in an ad he calls “First to Fight.”
It’s routine rhetoric in a political campaign, but Mandel is taking it one step further, pledging if he wins the Ohio Senate seat in 2018, he’ll only serve two terms.
“What we’re trying to do here is transfer the power from the politicians from the lobbyists, from the special interests to the people,” Mandel said in an interview.
This message in some ways echoes of one President Donald Trump’s central campaign messages.
“Trump did come in with this Drain the Swamp idea and things about lobbyists. He said I’m unbought and un-bossed,” said Michele Swers, Professor of Government at Georgetown University.
But will the issue of term limits be a dominant one in next year’s mid-term elections?
“Voters are definitely upset with Washington but generally in a midterm election that gets translated into how upset you are with the President and gets taken out on the President’s party.”
The man whose seat Mandel is trying to take said he’s hearing much different issues from voters who seem to be most concerned about jobs.
“People are working harder than ever before, longer hours, working harder, tougher jobs and they’re not seeing their wages go up,” said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D- Ohio).
How this all plays out in Washington is hard to say with the election still a year and a half away, though Ohio could present an early look at candidates drawing new battle lines over what they believe matters most.