Timmy, Can You
For probably what might have been too much time,
I knew two different behind the scenes people, who
ran many larger state and county political
campaigns. It was with mixed shock and disgust
that we watched one of them on television, charged
for election violations, embarrassing himself, his
family, friends and business associates.
"How could he be so stupid?" we the crushed asked.
None of us had seen or talked to him for months. He
lied to all of us about a few key things, completely
unrelated to his job or politics. All personal matters
and shamefully big whoppers. It wasn't until his
arrest that we even started bumping into one another
or calling to compare notes. Only in such hingsight
did we have questions. Nobody could have ever
imagined that something so out of character for him,
such as being arrested, would happen. His arrest
kissed goodbye all semblence of what really had
been quite a charmed life for him up until then.
Meanwhile, the second campaign runner never had
his character come into question. His integrity is
intact. One never quite was sure of his emotional
stability outside campaigns, but we bet it would have
been stronger had he laid off liquor after midnight
during campaigns. He was the most unlikely looking
campaign coordinator. He looked instead as though
he were head rodie on a Greatful Dead tour. He
typically cleaned up enough on time, to run a
fearless campaign boot camp for candidates and
their merry group of campaign helpers and win
elections, with respectable public relations and
"I'd sell my mother to win an election," he joked to
those he knew very well. The total stranger, or even
casual acquaintance, might have believed him. He
wouldn't sell mom, though. He lacked an unhealthy
focus that the election had to be won every time. He
accepted that his candidate might lose, and rarely
One thing that both these people had in common
was that neither would contract with a campaign
candidate if they didn't believe that the candidates
could win an election.
Neither would work with a politician or candidate
known to lie, or one believed to be lying about
something significant, or significant enough to
become a factor that could lose an election.
"People might be stupid enough to vote for liars,
but I won't help get one elected," the second
campaign manager was known to say. He said it
more than once, when he would not work with a
high roller, with plenty of money to spend on a good
campaign manager, because the political wanna be
had lied about something.
The very worst thing that both these campaign
managers feared would be that a scandal, one that
could not be quieted, would come up before election
day. That possibility caused them to turn down a
few more requests to run campaigns for disasters
waiting to happen.
Both's ideal campaign would be to work with a fairly
good speaker and thinker, running against a
The last time that I talked with the second campaign
manager, he contracted with a politician, who had
lied. Imagine my confusion!
He explained that the lie was not about a criminal
act, that someone else came forward, said, "Oh,
that! I did that! (insert name of elected official or
elected official wannabe here ) did not do that!"
Apparently, the second campaign manager believed
the candidate. He contended that it was exactly what
happened in that long ago case, though he said that
he knows that probably more guilty people use the
same type of scenerio to try to get out of a lie.
That would be the "Oh, that!" moment that the
campaign needed to get jumpstarted again to try to
win. Poof! All attention focused elsewhere. Away,
hopefully, at lease from the "Oh, that!" thing.
All that said, lets now talk about state Rep Tim
Mahoney, because up until now, we most certainly
Staying fair and neutral, we cannot say that
Mahoney lied to the paper in March, when he denied
having anything to do with the legal petition bearing
the names of private citizens to try to clear the
Republican ballot of two challengers in this month's
Staying fair and neutral, we are not saying that we
believe that Mahoney did not lie to the paper, either.
We simply do not know by any matter of fact.
We do not know facts with full certainty and may
never. But here is what we do know:
***The request bearing Mahoney's signature to the
state to obtain copies of Gary Gearing and Michael
Cananagh's candidate nominating petitions does not
contain clerk written notes, indicating where the
copies were to be sent, how the copies were to be
billed, and/or a phone number for the person
requesting the copies, as 2 other processed request
forms that we reviewed are so marked with clerk
notes. Possible indication of a cash transaction made
in person? We don't know.
***We don't know how the Fayette Republican
candidates' nominating petition got to Mahoney from
the state or if he really ever received them, read or
touched them. We don't know how many other
people might have read the petitions or had access to
them. We don't know.
***Two hands or 200 could have touched those
papers. We don't know.
***We don't know if the private citizens whose
names appeared on the petition to remove the
Republicans from the primary ballot have a paid
receipt from the lawyer for that work. We don't
***We don't know if Mahoney's campaign
committee has a receipt for $5,000 worth of work
for some other reason than the legal work to remove
the Republicans from the ballot. We asked, and we
certainly weren't the first to ask. We don't know.