Campaign flier for Wright links him to Romney
Mitt Romney doesn’t like Jared Wright.
That, at least, is what the campaign for the Republican candidate for House District 54 says in a flier that hit voters’ mailboxes earlier this week.
“Like Mitt Romney, the liberal media dislikes Jared Wright because they know he will fight to protect our conservative values,” a headline on the flier reads.
The flier, paid for by the Committee to Elect Jared Wright, includes Romney’s campaign logo and a picture of the GOP presidential candidate shaking hands with Wright.
That photo first appeared on Wright’s Facebook page as a profile picture not long after Romney was in Grand Junction in July.
Wright didn’t return requests for comment, but Tom Bjorklund did. Bjorklund, who has been paid thousands of dollars to run Wright’s campaign, said in an email:
“Election after election, the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel has only shown their complete lack of integrity and outright deception in trying to defeat conservative outsider candidates like Jared Wright. No wonder more and more readers are cancelling their subscriptions to your corrupt ‘newspaper.’ The citizens are tired of your dishonest manipulation of our community, even up to the final days before an election. This 11th hour attempt to continue your corrupt practices through spreading more false rumors and deception should also be rejected by voters who are no longer fooled by your claims of being a legitimate news source.”
The flier could be interpreted to say that the “liberal media” dislikes both Romney and Wright. But Romney campaign spokesman Clay Sutton said the flier, which Bjorklund put together, is still incorrect because it implies Romney endorses Wright.
“Mitt doesn’t know him or have anything to do with that campaign, so that’s completely off base,” Sutton said of the flier. “The governor’s endorsed very few candidates down-ballot, obviously, so this is something that would be news to anybody on Governor Romney’s team. It’s completely unassociated, or not a part of our campaign. Anything Jared Wright’s doing or pushing is completely independent from Governor Romney.”
The flier goes on to claim that “local citizens are preparing to file a formal electioneering complaint to the Secretary of State against the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel for deliberately deceiving the people about Jared Wright.”
The flier, however, does not say how the newspaper deceived voters.
Over the past few months, the Sentinel has written numerous stories about Wright’s troubles.
It started when Wright told voters he had resigned his post as a Fruita police officer so he could focus on his campaign for the Colorado House.
It turned out that wasn’t true.
According to a Fruita Police Department internal affairs investigation, Wright was offered the choice of resigning or being terminated on grounds he showed a pattern of dishonesty, particularly on his whereabouts while on the job, and placing other officers in jeopardy as a result.
Weeks later, the Sentinel discovered the 29-year-old candidate had filed for bankruptcy last year, owing more than $74,000 to credit card companies, lenders and debt collectors.
Colorado GOP officials said they knew about the bankruptcy but said Wright told them it was because of “the Obama economy,” saying he had business investments that went sour. That, too, turned out to be false.
According to Wright’s bankruptcy filing, Wright’s real reason was because of personal spending, buying such things as classic cars, jewelry and a tanning salon membership.
On Wednesday, that bankruptcy filing was finalized, with Wright owing more than $79,000, which includes court costs and other fees.
Those revelations about Wright’s background came as a surprise to several Republicans in the Grand Valley, many of whom called on him to end his candidacy and allow another candidate to take his place. Wright repeatedly refused.
During his campaign, Wright has repeatedly called himself a fiscal conservative who opposes government bailouts, saying on his flier that he “will fight to protect us as taxpayers.”
The flier goes on to criticize Wright’s only challenger in the race, Libertarian Tim Menger.
In it, he says Menger supports legalizing prostitution, unlimited abortions, drugs and gambling. Menger said the flier uses “lies and half-truths” in characterizing his stance on the issues.
“Romney’s smart enough to know a loser when he sees one,” Menger said. “He is insulting the people by believing that they will believe this. This proves they are desperate, and they’re pulling out everything they have at the very end.”