Endorsement Ads Raise Questions

2 Nov

An ad on page 22 of this week’s Leader (county edition) supporting local Republican candidates, discussed here by Linda Van de Riet (who has taken on a more moderate tone recently, and who mentions the ad running in a different publication), is missing some people. Specifically, Steve Farmer, Ken Horton, and Robert Boyer are absent from the list of GOP candidates the ad calls “A Winning Team for Jefferson County.” The first two of these are past and present JeffCo Tea Party leaders. One would not be surprised that the JeffCo GOP Central Committee, which has fought with the Tea Party this cycle and is one of the ad sponsors, would omit those two (not that it is appropriate at all to do so). In a comment at the link above, it is suggested that an email to Boyer about the ad went to the wrong Boyer.

Another group placed an ad with their endorsements in the Leader this week, on page 14. Some group called the Jefferson County Leadership PAC endorsed an odd bipartisan assemblage of candidates. They went with GOP candidates for county council Renee Reuter and Kevin Harned, but also with Democrat Tim Meadows. For county offices, they went with Democrats Linda Nees and Terry Roesch, but also Republicans Dan Stallman, Steve Farmer, and Stan Schnaare. It is not specified why these candidates were endorsed over their opponents.

Who is this group? The treasurers are Mike Reuter and Sharon Groeteke, spouses of county council members Renee Reuter and Charles Groeteke, respectively (Sarah Hurlburt has also been involved). Mr. Groeteke was defeated in the primary this year by George Engelbach. Maybe this is why Engelbach did not get the Leadership PAC’s endorsement over Meadows. The committee was originally created in September 2011 to support Mr. Groeteke and Mrs. Reuter; the group’s Statement of Committee Organization was amended last month to remove these candidates’ names from the Candidates Supported section of the form, which is now blank. We also know the group supported Kirk Ainley for Sheriff during the primary. The PAC has a Facebook page on which they say “We are not republican or democratic, we stand for the true values of our community and are more than willing to stand up for what we believe in!”

Candidates that have received support from this PAC are Harned, Farmer, Stallman, and – wait for it – Reuter. So while this PAC endorses some Democrats, it puts its money into GOP candidates exclusively. That is what one would expect from this group, considering it is made up of spouses of GOP politicians. One of the spouses is even a member of the JeffCo GOP Central Committee. In other words, hardly the people we would expect to be endorsing Democrats.

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2 Responses to “Endorsement Ads Raise Questions”

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  1. JeffCo Executive Races « Jefferson County Penknife - November 7, 2012

    […] GOP camps: he has been a leader of the Jefferson County Tea Party, and he was supported by the JeffCo Leadership PAC, which is more aligned with the mainstream wing of the party. That had to help him get over the […]

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  2. Party Rift at Parade | Jefferson County Penknife - July 5, 2014

    […] shenanigans occurred in 2012, when a print ad placed by the county GOP committee left out three candidates, two of whom were active in the local Tea Party. And also in 2012, in a move that […]

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