News Media Not Allowed to Sit in Democrat Executive Committee Meeting

By: La"Tasha Givens Email
By: La"Tasha Givens Email

Tallahassee, Florida --

A political flier left on the cars of African American church go-ers has some democratic candidates in an uproar.

The flier that's caused so much controversy in the Leon County Democratic Party highlights three African Americans who will appear on the November ballot. But what is left out are the white candidates who are running, some even for the same position. That's created a major rift in the local chapter.

A closed door emergency meeting was called tonight 10/5 to discuss this hot button issue. Raised voices could be heard outside during parts of the meeting. Close to 4,000 fliers were placed on cars at about fifty predominately black churches on Sunday 10/3. Many recipients thought it came from the Leon County Democratic Party and the organization endorsed certain candidates. But leaders say that's not the case. It was created and distributed by Jon Ausman who is part of the committee but did this on his own.

"The intention was to try to educate and motivate voters. Obviously I didn't do it in the way that was best for the committee. If you want to get people to vote, you try to specifically reach out to them in a positive way. It's unfortunate that I did not get permission from the membership and I regret that, says, Ausman.

Leon County Democratic Party Chairman Larry Simmons says, "We just want the voters to know that we will never under any circumstances other than when we set the process, that we would never chose one democrat over the other. So me personally and the committee, are rooting for all democrats."

The organization plans to create a tabloid with all the democrat candidates to promote everyone. Simmons says the organization's bi-laws allows them to endorse a candidate if they decide to but that clearly is not what happened in this case.

As for Ausman, he says he was not paid by any of those campaigns and has actually contributed to those who weren't on the flier. Leaders say they may consider taking disciplinary action against Ausman after the election.

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Tallahassee, FL - An emergency meeting of the Demcrat Executive Committee has been closed to the local media. The meeting had been called to discuss flyers that were posted predominantly at black churches.

The meeting was to have been open to the local media, but as a voluntary organization, the Democrat Executive Committee decided to exercise their right to close their doors to the media.

Committee representatives tell WCTV they will speak with the media after the meeting. That meeting began shortly after 5:30 p.m.

Tune in to WCTV Eyewitness News for more.


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