Ohio Republican Senate candidate Josh Mandel opposes gay marriage and the successful repeal of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.'

During a televised debate against his Democratic rival, Senator Sherrod Brown, held on Thursday in Columbus, Mandel was asked whether he thought repeal of the policy which banned gay and bisexual troops from serving openly was a “good idea” and whether he would support repeal of Ohio's 2004 constitutional amendment limiting marriage to a heterosexual union.

“Well, on the military side, I disagree with [the repeal],” he answered. “As far as the decision here in the state of Ohio, I'm a supporter of marriage between one man and one woman. I believe in traditional marriage.”

“At the same time, I want you to know I will do everything I can to represent every single person in the state of Ohio – all eleven point five million people. Regardless of their background, regardless of their socioeconomic background, regardless of their race, their religion or any other characteristic. … I'm going to be blind to race, religion, any other type of orientation here in the state of Ohio and when I go to Washington.”

Brown, a strong supporter of gay rights, responded by asking, “Why should we believe he supports equal rights for everybody?”

“Josh Mandel's voting record in the state legislature doesn't speak to that,” he said.