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Thursday, June 23, 2005

Jeb Bush weighs in on Democrats woes

Jeb Bush: 'Pathetic' Fla. Dem. party unhealthy for 2-party system

Jeb's advice to Democrats:

"If I were a Democrat I might take a look at some of the other candidates," Bush said. "The sad fact is, the Democratic Party isn't even a big business, it's a small business and you should be able to stay on top of stuff like that."

St Pete Times Editorial

Florida's paper of record has weighed in as well on the current situation, being dubbed by some as "Maddoxgate."

Tampa Tribune Editorial

Also, check out Florida Politix Blog

James Haywood's excellent blog, has all the angles of the story covered. I suggest you check out his coverage of the ongoing situation as well as other political news in the state.


Douglas said...

How embarrasing for Maddox & Co.

He is just like Dean and like Dean he is the Republicans "dream opponent" who would get absolutely clobbered in a general election.

Democrats be forewarned - if Maddox finds a way to spin his way out of this debacle and improbably wns the nomination, he will be responsible for making the Democrats a permanent minority party in Florida.

Thanks goodness he has been exposed, trivialized and marginialized early before he had a chance to sell more of his snake oil to gullible activist Democrats.

Tim L said...

Maddox is a joke. Jeb Bush has given us some very friendly advice. Look at other candidates he said. The bottom line is if Maddox somehow got elected he'd probably be indicted and thrown in jail and the Democrats wouldn't win an election in the state for 25 years. Trust me, I know Scott Maddox. I've known him since he was in law school. He's a crook and very very dangerous. If the rank in file Democrats allow him to get off the hook this time, then the Democrats might as well disband as a political party in this state.

Tommy said...

I wish Jeb had not been nice enough to give you guys any advice.

I hope the idiots in your party use reverse psychology and nominate the lying crooked weisel!

Joe said...

The Republicans couldn't stay out of this one...........can you blame them? We are such an inviting target. Tim L. I too have known Scott for years and that's exactly the reason I would never vote for him for anything.

It is amazing to me that all of these activists around the state that love him so, don't really know him at all, heck they don't even know the first thing about him and his family and the PBA, etc.

Lou said...

Maddox will not survive this. I've spoken to so many of my friends in the party and the gay community who just think it is a matter of time before he bails.

What they have said is that he won't bail in the heat of the moment but that he will when the hubub dies down.

The question, is how does the effect the other Democrats running. Would Smith or Davis benefit from a Maddox withdrawal? Who else would get in?

Kartik said...

I have heard specultation from an associate/friend who attended the Osceola DEC meeting that Daryl Jones may get in. I'll have to check with some other sources to confirm if he is even thinking about it or if it was just desperate speculation in light of the Maddox situation.

MaddoxforCFO said...

The tradition of the FDP has been made by such men as Leroy Collins, Reuben Askew and Bob Graham. Now people in our party see this dishonest dirt bag as our future. I hope he gets nailed for good on this.

If he doesn't, we'll be discussing yet another Maddox created scandal in a few weeks. Trust me from knowing both him and his dad. They cannot stay out of trouble. They are both too arrogant and unwilling to compromise and are exceedingly selfish.

Lou, This guy will never leave the race. He's sure he's going to President some day and that the rules do not apply to him. This is a man that extended his term as mayor of Tallahassee beyond the time in the charter and this is a man who violated every written rule the Democratic Party has. He needs to go down.

Tim L said...

I was reading the story in this morning's Democrat and it is pathetic! Cotterel doesn't want to ask the tough questions. Why the heck is the media letting this clown get away with his lame explanation:

"I take full responsibility," yet he hasn't taken any responsibility because he threw the party comptroller under the bus and still will not admit to knowing about the IRS probe even through the word around town is that the party has been under the gun from the IRS since at least February.

Either Maddox is one of two things.

1- An inept manager
2- An outright liar

I don't believe that either trait serves someone who is seeking to lead our state very well.

Jill said...

I don't believe that Scott Maddox has a prayer to escape this. Perhaps it is because I am already partial to another candidate, but everybody I have spoken to believes he is dead in the water. Consider also that Maddox left the party at a time when payroll was at its highest point in a non campaign quarter ever and fundraising was at its lowest point in several years.

Maddox decided to leave this mess to someone else and then award a big contract to a friend of his. Perhaps Karen Thurman who I know very well and have worked with (actually volunteered) on both her 2000 and 2002 campaigns should have struck down the deal with the company, but she didn't.

As I mentioned before I know Thurman personally and I do not think she is willing to take the fall for Maddox's misdeeds. She has a great deal invested in the party and a number of people are getting involved once again with the state party simply because she is the chair and for twenty years she has been one of the best Democrats in the state.

Thurman will not let Maddox bring her or the party down. Just wait until the audit is complete: You'll see what a fighter and truth teller Thurman is.

Tim L said...


This is a big test for Thurman. If she allows Maddox to escape this with the lame explanations he has given, she has no business being the chair of the party. We need real hard nosed leadership at this hour of crisis. The already reeling Florida Democratic Party has been raped by somebody who is not worthy of any high office or honor. Yet, we continue to allow him to define the issue and dent everything to the newspapers and the other candidates both of whom I like are being total sissies.

I can bet anyone my entire net worth that if Jim Davis or Rod Smith was in the position Maddox is in today, Maddox would be attacking the living daylights out of the issue and setting the tone with the press. Maddox would be so aggressive that he'd likely force the other candidate out of the race. Are Smith and Davis leaders or just nice guys going along to get along? I've seen Rod Smith several times here in the Senate and thought he was tough as nails. Then why isn't finishing this guy off? Jim Davis may just be too nice a guy who doesn't want to rock the boat. We need a Democrat that is going to destroy Maddox, allow our party some closure on the three year Maddox nightmare, and then help rebuild our party from the ground up.

Maddox has been dangerous since our days together at FSU. He has always been a person who plays to win at all costs. It doesn’t matter whom he runs over or who he hurts in the process. My faith in the Democratic rank in file will be permanently shook if this guy gets away with this act which very well could be criminal.

I hope Thurman is what you describe, Jill.

Anonymous said...

Initial Reports About Party Finances Were Erroneous; All FDP Funds Are 100% Accounted For

-- A careful review of the records brings good and reassuring news for Florida Democrats. Initial news reports of a "missing" $900,000 were utterly incorrect, based on an error by a Party staffer tasked with completing the myriad of state and federal campaign finance reports required in a fast-paced presidential election year.

-- Bottom line: Over the past 48 hours, a more careful review of Florida Democratic Party records has confirmed that all FDP funds for 2003-2004 are 100% present and accounted for.

-- The FDP's 2004 campaign finance reports are now being corrected to properly reflect that every dime of Party money during Scott Maddox's tenure as FDP Chairman is fully accounted for.

-- This situation is not unique to Florida: Democratic Party organizations in several battleground states experienced similar reporting challenges in 2004, largely due to complexities arising from the brand new McCain-Feingold campaign finance law.

-- Florida Democrats are relieved and reassured that initial news accounts about the Party's finances have proved untrue. Anyone with a personal agenda who continues to suggest otherwise is spreading falsehoods that damage and disparage a Democratic Party the rest of us believe in so deeply. Democrats are outraged and ashamed of anyone who tears down our Party simply to build up their personal profile, or promote their selfish political ambitions.

Resolution Of Party FICA Tax Issue Already In Place; Maddox Stands Up And Takes Responsibility For Staffer's Error

-- Making good on his immediate and solemn promise to help correct 2003's unpaid FICA tax error, Mayor Maddox has worked with the new FDP leadership and officials at the Democratic National Committee to secure a DNC loan, allowing the Party to pay its outstanding obligations.

-- This experience has shown Floridians something unique and refreshing about Scott Maddox's personal character and leadership style: Mayor Maddox's insistence on accepting full responsibility for the actions of his staff is uncommon in a day and age when too many politicians attempt to shirk responsibility and shift blame during challenging times.

-- Like everyone else, Scott Maddox only learned of a Party staffer's bookkeeping error -- which led to the accidental non-payment of some 2003 FDP FICA taxes -- two days ago. Nonetheless, Mayor Maddox immediately said, "I accept full responsibility for the actions of my staff when I served as Party Chair. That's what real leadership requires."

Maddox for Governor Campaign Racing Forward On All Cylinders

-- It's full-steam ahead at Maddox for Governor, as the campaign builds on Mayor Maddox's electrifying appearance at the annual Jefferson-Jackson Day Dinner two weeks ago.

-- Scott Maddox has already been endorsed for Governor by Republican and Democratic Mayors, local elected officials, and Democratic party leaders across the state.

-- Thousands of Floridians are joining Mayor Maddox's campaign to bring fresh new leadership to the Governor's office, and finally put everyday Floridians first again...every single day.

Tim L said...


Has the audit been completed by Thurman yet? Have all funds really been accounted for? Why have the daily papers not broken this story as of this hour?

I'm anxiously await your response. Call Maddox HQ if you must to get us a truthful answer.

Tim L said...

Also, anonymous has Maddox really taken full responsibility. His claim of a "bookkepping error" seems to be pasing the buck to me.

Anonymous said...

Has his trip to Costa Rica to "learn Spanish" been explained?

Tim L said...

Maddox went to Costa Rica on the party's dime. What a F'n crook!

Anonymous said...

He was at my event on the way to Costa Rica with another party "official" and was specifically told it was being paid for by the party so they could learn Spanish. I'm sorry, but isn't the guy from Miami?

JK said...

While the Democratic Party was in pretty pathetic shape to quote the Governor prior to Maddox's Chairmanship, the FDP is now the nation's laughingstock. Maddox's accomplishments include the running up of a large debt, losing every statewide race on his watch, and turning off many major longtime donors to the party. Maddox made it clear to many of us who have worked for this party through the years that our knowledge and assistance were not welcome in his party.

I have no idea whether these allegations are true or not. But one thing is for sure. Had Maddox been more open and accomodating to people who had been leaders in the party for years, he'd be getting a lot more support and benefit of the doubt right now.

Anonymous said...

The audit by the FDP will be completed next week. The information that was listed here, while the post didn't credit it as such, was actually a press release from the Maddox campaign. Way to be honest.

As for the trip, I heard that it was Puerto Rico. Maddox and a female employee went to Puerto Rico to . . . learn Spanish. Geez, I hope she didn't bring a blue dress with her!

browarddem06 said...

You people are so high school. The missing money has been found while the IRS lien has been cleared.

Scott Maddox, the best hope we Florida Democrats have had in a decade to revive our party is gaining new supporters everyday from Pensacola to Miami. We must fight the Republican spin machine and slader campaign against Scott Maddox. Those of you who calim to be Democrats need to back off, now for the sake of the party.

Jill said...


I spoke to someone very close to the situation this morning who tells me the audit will not be complete until next week, and that the former state prosecutor, Ms. Hines is also doing an investigation. Please explain how you can claim all the money is accounted for?

Anonymous said...

I agree with Tim L.

Bill Cotterel from the Tallahassee Democrat and most of Florida's reporters have dropped the ball. It looks as though they simply dropped quotes from a Maddox press release into their articles.

As much as Party activists and Maddox supporters like Browarddem06 are trying to brush this under the rug, this is a very serious issue. Scott Maddox and others need to be made to give thorough explanations, but more importantly the reporters need to start asking the difficult questions. We don't have a strong press in Florida, but let's see how they handle this one.

Marcus C said...

The long sorry decline of the Democratic Party in Florida was already in full force when Maddox took over the chairmanship. Despite this, Democrats still had a decent infrastructure on the ground and a degree of cooperation between elected officials, donors and the party apparatus itself. Keeping those links intact and trust between the links was critical to keeping the Democratic Party in Florida afloat.

What Scott Maddox id as Chair is to sever the links, poison the well with donors and elected officials and adjust the party apparatus and infrastructure to suit his own goals. Anybody who wasn’t a strict Maddox loyalist, even if they had years and years of experience was shown the door and told to never come back.. Thus, countless PACs, 527s and other activist organizations made up of former Democratic leaders popped up across the state. Maddox then had no trouble violating long established party rules and possibly violating Federal law. Maddox’s excuse has always to blame other people and play a game of subterfuge where others are blamed and the issue at hand is changed. That is why Maddox caught a break with Bush’s comments, because it has given the minions of Scott all of whom seem to check any objectivity at the door an opportunity to make Jeb Bush the issue rather than Maddox’s unethical and potentially illegal behavior. Maddox’s spin machine has been at work all day making Jeb Bush an issue and has implied that anyone who doesn’t back Maddox is part of a GOP plot.

Maddox is a complete scumbag. If we as Democrats allow him to continue to manipulate us, we deserve what we will get which is a loss of whatever office we still hold in this state and long term realignment which prevents the Democrats from being competitive again in our lifetime. The choice is ours. We either run this reckless demagogue out of the party or we lose.

Anonymous said...

Are all of you Democrats or paid Republican operatives? How can you guys continue to question Maddox when the missing money has been found, and the IRS lien paid off? You people are pathetic.

Anonymous said...

Browarddem06 says that some of the comments here are "so high school." I agree 100%, but I am also realistic. Most of the typical Republican commercials are "so high school." And they don't care about the truth. They are going to hit Scott so hard, and the "You people are so high school." excuse isn't going to cut it. (I can already imagine commercials by the Swift Boat Accountants for Truth!)

I like Scott, but the sad truth is that this is the kind of scandal that he can't come back from. For the good of the Party and for his family, he should really go back to working behind the scenes in politics.

Anonymous said...

This is heart wrenching stuff guys.......The Republican operatives have achieved this goal of pitting us against one another in order to keep us disorganized. They now that with the present record of both Bushes they cannot possibly hope to hold the Governorship in this state beyond 2006. Charlie Crist will be outed and Gallagher besides being a crook was once a womanizer of legendary stature.

Scott Maddox is the Democrat they fear. They figure if they can take him down and divide our party, the other two candidates are both so weak and indecisive that they can once again squek by on a record of lies and fear. Please for the good of the Democratic Party stop this "Maddoxgate" talk. The problem has been solved and the issue is dead. Blogs like this are what is keeping the story in circulation.

Anonymous said...

You must be on another planet if you really think the GOP fears Maddox, a man who has made countless enemies IN HIS OWN PARTY through his arrogance and sheer contempt of anyone who may even in slightest way be an opponents of his.

JK said...

The bottom line is that Maddox's mismangment caused the IRS to put a lien on the Florida Democratic Party whose chairman was Scott Maddox. Period. That all the Republicans need to run on. Do you want him to be the nominee with all this baggage?

Tim L said...

If the Democrats don't dump Maddox a whole lot of us will be dumping the Democrats. Trust me on this one.

Anonymous said...

I have just learned that the missing $900,000 was indeed an error/ it was a glitich based upon new reporting practices. Also, the missed taxes were in fact paid by the party employee in question via electronic transimission but it then turned out the IRS did not get EFTS payment.

This whole matter will be over and one with next week it appears. Thank goodness. Maddox did not do anything wrong, but got lynched by a rush to judgement by political opponents.

browarddem06 said...

Here is an excellent message from Jack Shifrel, a leader here in Broward County.

It appears that, surprise surprise, initial reports
concerning the FDP;s finances may be somewhat
exaggerated, to say the least.

Regardless of what any follow-up audit indicates,
hopefully that we are in far better financial shape
than indicated by naysayers & those who would rush to
judgement, there are other, perhaps more serious
ramifications of this situation.

I believe someone who may very well be a high ranking
person within the Florida Democratic Party, leaked
"information" they seem to have hoped to be true or at
the very least distorted, to the press.

That person may try to act as though he or she has the
best interests of the Democratic Party in mind, but
would appear to be nothing less than a self-serving
sneak who, if my suspicion is correct, needs to be
exposed as a dangerous fraud.

We may yet learn that we in fact have a very serious
problem that will cause us great dificulty in upcoming
elections. I hope and am optomistic that the truth is
otherwise. Either way, some embarrassing damage has
been done. Even if it turns out nothing was as it was
reported, there will always be those who only remember
& believe negative stories.

So what are the lessons?

1. It is almost always wrong to rush to judgement.

2. To paraphrase Ronald Reagan (even a broken clock is
right twice a day) we should never speak ill of
another Democrat, the opposition Party will do more
than enough of that for us.

3. If you are asked a about what appears to be a
controversy, you would be wise to have nothing to say
until all the facts are in. If they press you, remind
them that initial reports are often wrong or
exaggerated and that you'd rather not fuel any
negative fire. Try to let reason & common sense

4. The identity of the person who leaked this
"information" to the press & caused this embarrassing
mess to become much more than it ever had to be will
eventually become known & pay back is a bitch, I don't
care who you are.

5. As far as our disgusting, lying, cheating,
stealing piece of garbage worst governor in history is
concerned, as I always say, people who live in glass
houses should not take showers in the day time.

6. If the worst is true, this internal Party
situation pales in comparison to lying to our country
& the world about weapons of mass destruction,
fighting against even a barely liveable minimum wage,
cutting needed services & programs to fund tax cuts
for the rich, meddling in the private lives of people
at their most vulnerable point for political gain & I
could go on and on listing the abhorrent acts, abuses
& policies of the Republican Party.

7. If the worst is true & more, I am still proud to
be a Democrat because of our principles & ideals &
because, after all is said & done, we are still The
Party of The People.

Jack Shifrel

MaddoxforCFO said...

Maddox lovers,

Do you guys realize Maddox fired just about the entire party staff when he took over and brought cronies in to run the place, all of whom had worked for him at the City of Tallahassee?

Any problem a staff member had was due to Maddox's poor choice of a supporting cast. As has been pointed out countless times by other people on this blogsite Maddox ran off anybody who had been a key element in the party's past. So in a nutshell Maddox is guilty of dividing the party and creating bad will all around. I for one hope that he goes down so that we can save our party.

Lou said...

Who is your source that all is clear? If any of this true, IRS lien or missing money or even juststaff snafus, Maddox must drop out for the party's good.

Tim L said...

If Scott backs his way out of this one, the Democrats who are crowing now will wonder why once again we got our clocks cleaned in November 2006. The party is becoming more and more morally bankrupt.

Anonymous said...

The scandal has ended. Maddox will be cleared of all wrongdoing. This is great news for the party and our next Governor!

Jill said...

I just got off the phone with a friend close to the situation. While it is true that $900,000 may not have been missing financial discrepencies did occur during Maddox's tenure. Moroever, the IRS apparently notified the FDP five different times that they had not paid the taxes they owed and the notices were ignored. All five instances were while Maddox was chair. Regarding the $900,000, apparently it didn't show up on some balance sheets, because (and this is speculation) Maddox or someone else used the money for personal purposes and claimed it was for party business. Perhaps it was a trip to Puerto Rico AND Costa Rica as mentioned above.

Jack said...

You Maddox people are really nieve to believe this thing is over and even more nieve to say that Maddox accepted full responsibility. This issues is going to churn through the weekend: count on it. I bet the papers are all over it all weekend.

Anonymous said...

Maddox wins. The isssue is dead.

JK said...

These pronouncements that Maddox is out of the woods are far too premature and amount to nothing less than clevel political spin. Let's see how the chips fall the next few days.

Joe said...

Maddox declaring victory is just like his buddy Howard Dean declaring victory after Iowa. This saga is just beginning and either Maddox will come out deeply wounded or dead altogether. No way he gets out clean.

Jeff C said...

Buddy Nevins really took some shots at Maddox this morning. I was shocked because normally Nevins is pro Maddox and his faction in Broward. I think slowly but surely people are begining to jump ship.

Joe said...

Fellow Democrats,

Whether you like Scott Maddox personally or not, let's be real here for a minute. We continue to rightly attack the Republicans on lying and moral lapses. We attack Jeb and George W. Bush for being uncompromising and willing to throw anybody and anything under the bus in order to win. The Bushes make up facts, they embellish they flat out lie sometimes.

We as Democrats don't like that. Scott Maddox was right when time and time again he says it makes him "mad." But you know what else should make us Democrats mad? When a Democrat, who is a leader of our party for two and a half year period engages in, very much the same win at all costs behavior. As numerous posters have mentioned above, Maddox ran off everybody with competence and experience in our party. Maddox made the party rather than a functioning entity working to help Democrats get elected into the cult of personality. Maddox has violated party rules regularly and asked DEC leadership to do the same. Maddox has arranged coups around the state to fill DEC’s with loyalists. Maddox has allowed the party fall into debt, and now has allowed the IRS to place a lien on all our bank accounts. Let me ask an honest question. Looking at Scott Maddox’s track record as Chair of the party, what entitles him to even consider running for Governor?

demsfor2006 said...


You need calm down. The comparison of Scott Maddox to the Bushes is downright slanderous. Scott Maddox is a man of the highest morals and integrity. A mistake by a bookkeeper does not make him a liar and all the other stuff you said he and Jeb had in common. Shame on you. Some Democrat you are.

Tim L said...

Lucy Morgan in today's Sp Times states that Maddox's actions if proven true should prosecuted. She also states that Maddox's behavior is a threat to the two party system in Florida.

Tim L said...


I think Joe was kind in how he described Maddox. I'm a bleeding heart liberal democrat who is advocated for children and families. Yet I believe Maddox is probably the most dangerous elected official I have run across anywhere in this state in either party. He is a pathalogical liar and someone who has no conscience whatsoever. As I have said time and time again, he needs to go down or some of us will become Independents. This is the biggest test for the Democratic Party in this state if it ever wants to recover and rebuild its lost fortunes.

Anonymous said...

The three papers that have all ripped Maddox on its editorial pages are papers in Jim Davis' home region. Davis should be a real man and step out and say what he feels about Maddox rather than manipulating editorial boards into attacking Maddox on allegations which are highly likely to be dropped next week.

Journalists should be more responsible than to be manipulated by local politicians. Same goes for Buddy Nevins who this morning was clearly being manipulated by Skip Campbell, an open die hard supporter of Rod Smith.

Whjy don't Smith and Davis step up rather than having the newspapers risk their appearance of objectivity by printing this garbage.

Once all of this is disproven, Davis is going to fall hard in the polls. Maddox will be the nominee.

Tim L said...

Manipulated by the media? That's all Maddox has done the last few years and it is about time the press caught on. Fox example, Maddox sent out a glowing press release saying the party was debt free and had won all of these municipal elections statewide during his tenure. Many newspapers in the state reprinted the press release VERBATIM. It was a release chock full of lies and half truths. The same person who did his press he gave a parting gift, a $100,000 contract for event production. This person was according to many the worst Pr person that ever was on staff at the FDP. He brought in his own comproller and TV producer and technology person all from the city of Tallahassee. They were all cronies of his. Yet the papers said nothing.

Davis and Smith manipulte the papers? C'mon. Do you know the reputation of the St Pete Times throughout the nation? It is considered among the best papers anywhere in the USA. The Times would NEVER allow a politician to manipulate the editorial page. That is an insulting suggestion and to the anonymous poster who said that I urge you to apologize.

Maddoxmustgo said...

The arguements brought forward by the pro-Maddox people speak loudly to why the Democratic Party has lost its way with mainstream America. You guys claim conspiracies and media polts against your candidate without a shred of evidence.

Scott Maddox has become the ultimate bomb thrower in Florida politics and his game includes riling up the masses of Democratic activists against anybody in power; the GOP, the media, Democratic elected officials, etc, etc. He is finally being exposed for what he always has been. A hypocritcal fraud.

douglas said...

For the person who said only mnaipulated regional papers where writing anti-Maddox editorials, try this on for size.

Yep, the SOUTH FLORIDA Sun-Sentinel says Maddox should go too:,0,3245081.story?coll=sfla-news-editorial

Taxing Problem

South Florida Sun-Sentinel Editorial Board

June 25, 2005


IRS tax lien could hurt Democratic gubernatorial candidate

Everyone knew the Florida Democratic Party was in trouble, but at least it never had the long arm of the law after it -- until now. Now the IRS has placed a lien on the party's assets for failure to pay taxes on its employees.

The delinquency occurred while Scott Maddox was the state party chairman. Maddox blames it on an employee's mistake, and no one is suggesting Maddox himself did anything wrong, other than not run a very tight ship.

His problem is political. He's running for governor, and heading an organization that doesn't pay its taxes doesn't look so good on a candidate's resume. Maddox has his work cut out to convince voters he can do a better job running the state.

Copyright © 2005, South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Anonymous said...

I think everyone needs to know the real truth about Jeff Tinsley - the Jeff who has posted on this blog.

Jeff is an active supporter of the Maddox campaign. On the day that Maddox announced his candidacy for governor, Jeff sent out a vicious attack email, blasting Congressman Jim Davis and Senator Rod Smith, Maddox's two opponents in the primary. While Jeff's original email had merit and did raise legitimate concerns about Davis and Smith, it is somewhat hypocritical for Maddox supporters to complain about their candidate getting hit hard with mud when it was the Maddox campaign that lashed out first at its opponents.

Last night, Jeff sent out another email to Maddox supporters asking them to bombard the blogosphere and post comments to make it appear as if the majority of Democrats support Maddox's run for governor and reject the latest scandals. The tactic that Jeff has endorsed is commonly known as "freeping" and is used by right-wing activists to rig online polls and discussion boards.

Below is the email sent out last night by Jeff Tinsley, a Scott Maddox operative:

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Wednesday, June 29, 2005 5:14 PM
Subject: Blogs: getting our message out.

I am organizing, independent of the Maddox campaign, an effort to correct the record about skewed anti-Maddox propaganda appearing on blog sites throughout the state. The two sites I have been monitoring are, a website run by James Haywood a notorious hater of Scott Maddox. Also being monitored is, which is website run by Kartik Krishnaiyer a paid political operative supporting one of Mayor Maddox's primary opponents. Kartik Krishnaiyer, has also been directing reporters from the St Pete Times to his blog site in order to help feed the Times continued hatchet job on Scott Maddox. I would like to get as many friendly posts on these blogsites as possible to let everybody know where we stand. Also, any information on other blog sites would be helpful. I understand Derek Newton another Democratic operative hostile to Scott Maddox has his own blogsite as well. It is important that we monitor any of his postings as well, though I have failed to find his blog. Also please post on Josh Hicks excellent website, Josh is one of the finest young leaders our party has and it is important to support his efforts as much as we possibly can.

Thank you in advance for your help.

Jeff Tinsley

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