Who bears responsibility for misleading campaigning?

by John Mulholland

During the recent Republican Congressional District 3 convention race, we heard a lot of misleading information. A little came from the actual campaigns but much came from various supporters. At what point should the campaigns bear responsibility?

The Attack

During the recent GOP special convention, we all saw a lot of false information flying around. Unfortunately, some people chose to create this nonsense without even bothering to talk to the people involved.

There was a particular article, posted by Ed Wallace, that caught a lot of attention alleging a secret conspiracy existed to stack the delegates for Senator Henderson at the convention. Ed has posted wild accusations before but has largely been ignored. This time he attacked a candidate though.

Who is behind this article isn’t as important as who shared it. We teach our kids not to share this kind of stuff but perhaps some may feel that it is critical information that should be shared. Then you should at least do your due diligence work to make sure it is accurate. Don’t go ahead and say “if this is accurate” and then pretend you don’t have any responsibility.

This time Ed was attacking a candidate, Senator Henderson, in a tightly contested race. Well-known Republicans such as Phill Wright and Arturo Morales shared it. Phill didn’t bother to even talk to those involved and was even part of the leadership at the last convention but told me that he doesn’t take any responsibility for sharing or any data discrepancies that happened as he wasn’t involved in that.

Arturo is part of the Utah County GOP leadership, which was accused. I asked Arturo why he posted it and he said that it was the Utah County GOP chair’s responsibility to answer the allegations. That seems odd to me as they work together and Arturo could have just asked.

The Question

Now what gets interesting is that both of these two are very avid Chris Herrod supporters. Isn’t it convenient that here is an anonymous article that you can share to attack your political opponent?

Does Chris Herrod, who is known to attack political opponents with poorly photo-shopped images, bear any responsibility? I asked Chris and he really didn’t want to talk about it.

The Response

Normally I would say he doesn’t, especially as I don’t think he knew much about it. You don’t get to choose who supports you, but in this case, you do choose who goes up on stage with you. Phill and Arturo were both there. Perhaps you also bear some responsibility how your key supporters act when they are mimicking your behavior.

Chris ran a website called unconcon.com. He has since deleted the content on that site. I asked him why and he said times have changed. Does this mean that he is now running for office?  Thanks to internet caching the site’s content has been brought back at http://chrisherrod.net/. You should check it out. Chris said it wasn’t accurate but failed to elaborate. The site even has images of Chris’s old posts.

Some say that a lot of Chris’s attacks came before the race started. Doesn’t that make them more important?

The Question to Readers

What do you think? Do we encourage this kind of behavior by letting is slide after the votes have been taken? I would love to hear the opinion of the various people who read this.

Relevant links

The awful and misleading post is here. Read it if you want a good laugh.

This is the article I did on Chris Herrod prior to the convention.

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