By RYAN DUNN
OTTAWA — How better to promote a judge candidate — and explain primary election voting procedures — than a “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” theme song parody?
The race for Putnam County Probate and Juvenile Court judge has drawn more attention recently thanks to a video by Mandy Bosiljevac.
The Bluffton resident created and starred in an online advertisement for a family friend, Judge Michael Borer. Borer is competing with Putnam County Prosecutor Gary Lammers for the Democratic nomination.
“A lot of people have been saying I’m very brave,” Bosiljevac said.
The video, credited to “M-Bizzle and the Cool Crew,” features women dancing in vintage 1980s clothing outside the Putnam County Courthouse and around downtown Ottawa. Bosiljevac raps about how and when to vote.
“At the Board of Elections in Ottawa, Ohio, you can cast your ballot in early-voter style,” she says in the video. “Starting April 1st, weekdays from 8 to 5, you can pick the day and time that’ll make your schedule jive.”
Bosiljevac said she chose the iconic song because of its notoriety and ease to parody.
The video also endorses Borer and is featured prominently on a Facebook page for his re-election. It’s drawn more than 100 likes and nearly as many shares.
“I feel very honored this crazy idea I had seems to have worked,” Bosiljevac said.
Bosiljevac, 28, is part of a sketch group called Red Shorts Comedy. There aren’t many humor videos recorded in the area, she said, so she pitched it to Borer.
He was doubtful, Bosiljevac said, but the video’s catchy rundown of voting rules won him over, she said.
Her goal was to offer a more memorable campaign ad than a doorknob placard. Primary elections in smaller counties are usually decided by tight vote margins, she said.
“Even if people are laughing at me, you know they’re watching,” she said.