Sunday, May 8, 2016

McAfee, Petersen campaigns allege dirty tricks by Johnson campaign

Libertarian Party Presidential Campaign Gets Nasty - Hit & Run : - Brian Doherty:

April 21, 2016 - "Both [John] McAfee's camp and that of Austin Petersen ... have floated accusations of naughty skulduggery against [Gary] Johnson's campaign.

"It seems to have started with McAfee himself, who had been painting himself as a happy new convert to the party and someone who intended to stick with it for the long term, announcing that he would not stick with the party if Johnson were its nominee..... McAfee did not then and still has not himself publicly stated his reasons for feeling this way about Johnson....

"Within a few days, Petersen's camp also on Facebook floated stories of Johnson campaign operatives playing some dirty-ish tricks, including sneakily offering to pay off campaign operatives from rival campaigns to either jump ship or just sit out the process.

"Johnson's campaign was also accused of renting every available room in the Rosen Centre where the convention is held, in an effort to prevent delegates from other campaigns finding lodging during the party's nominating convention in Orlando in May.

"Finding supporting specifics that might verify these accusations has proven difficult, and none of the public accusers have had much to offer. I was led to and communicated with one Nevada delegate who preferred not to be named who did say the Johnson campaign offered him a free room if he promised to support Johnson, but he declined to provide names or other potentially corroborating details.... Another prospective delegate who also did not want her story public spoke of someone close to the campaign offering her a professional favor if she swore fealty to the campaign, but no hotel room.

"On Facebook, both Petersen and later McAfee's vice presidential pick Judd Weiss ... have been hit with doubters asking them to provide some proof.... Petersen and Weiss both seem to believe the accusations are true from my communications with them, but it's not publicly clear why they believe it, though they certainly imply that they've been given inside scoops not available to us....

"Michael Iafatro, a travel agent who worked with the campaign, told me in an IM interview that ... 'the GJ campaign has booked 2 suites which were part of the suite packages offered by the National LP' and that far from filling the Rosen Center, 'I have blocked rooms as far away as the airport for Johnson delegates' ... The national L.P. office said through a spokesperson that 'there is no individual or as far as we can tell pattern of associated people who have booked any bloc' at the Rosen....

"While none of the accusers named to me or anywhere I've seen publicly [identify] any specific campaign officials who were supposedly offered payoffs from Johnson, I've heard implications that Christopher Thrasher, McAfee's former campaign manager who did indeed leave that position the week all these rumors began floating, might be at issue....

"[W]hen I called McAfee this week to ask if he'd elaborate on what he learned about Johnson that made him declare he wants nothing to do with the party if Johnson is its candidate, he first said 'no comment' then called back with a couple: First, that McAfee's concerns have 'nothing whatsoever to do with the issues Judd Weiss has bought up' and are 'completely different' and 'issues that have not yet been publicly brought up by anyone ever'."

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