Democratic Party files complaint against Montgomery County treasurer candidate

Montgomery County Treasurer Russ Joseph, Democrat (left) and Republican challenger John McManus (right).
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Montgomery County Treasurer Russ Joseph, Democrat (left) and Republican challenger John McManus (right).

The Montgomery County Democratic Party has filed a complaint with the Ohio Elections Commission against Republican candidate for Montgomery County Treasurer John McManus, alleging McManus reported contributions from the Republican Party not cited on the party’s reports.

In the complaint, Montgomery County Democratic Party Chairman Mark E. Owens said McManus reported receiving $20,000 from the Montgomery County Republican Party as a contribution, but that the expenditure was not on finance reports from the Republican Party.

Owens also said McManus reported an in-kind contribution of $30,000 from the Republican Party, but the report from the party did not show an in-kind contribution to McManus.

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The complaint concludes that since the Republican Party does not confirm the $20,000 contribution, it calls into question whether the money actually came from the party.

In a written statement responding to the complaint, McManus said, “I received a contribution of $20,000 from the Montgomery County Republican Party, which I clearly listed on my campaign finance report.”

He added that this is required by law, writing, “This is the first time I have ever seen a complaint filed against a candidate for correctly reporting a campaign contribution.”

McManus currently serves as the chief deputy clerk of courts for Montgomery County.

Russ Joseph, a Democrat, is the current treasurer, appointed by the party to the post last year to replace Carolyn Rice after she was elected county commissioner. Prior to that, he was the party-appointed Montgomery County clerk of courts until he lost his election bid in 2018 to Republican Mike Foley, who is McManus' boss.

McManus served on the Dayton school board from 2016 to 2020, and in 2018 unsuccessfully ran as a Democrat for the Ohio House of Representatives.

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