Thursday, April 10, 2014

Don't Vote For Me

This is just a strange little anecdote about the perils of modern campaigning.
He really does want you to vote for him

Tuesday morning I was looking at my Tweetdeck and noticed something from Allen Weh, a Republican who is running for U.S. Senate. Right by the Colonel's smiling face was the message "DO NOT VOTE FOR ALLEN WEH!"

I checked again, to make sure it wasn't some joke account, but no, it was Weh's campaign Twitter feed.

There was a link to follow. My first guess was that that the message would be something like "Don't vote for Allen Weh if you like the mess in Washington, D.C." or "if you like high taxes" or something.

But no.

The link went to a site that appeared to be some kind of national GOP message board and here was the rest of the message

Allen Weh's campaign made a contract and then DID NOT PAY THEIR BILL of $2,500 owed. In addition they broke the non-disclosure agreements. It is our opinion that Allen Weh's team cannot be trusted.

Allen Weh's team put down half of the money to make sure that their competition for US Senate could not use the tools to win, as we only serve one campaign per primary, they pumped us for information on best practices, which they then used, and then they canceled the account after two months, and after they were ahead of [Republican primary  opponent David] Clements and had the knowledge they think they need to win.

We will now be helping the Clements campaign win the election. It is our opinion that Allen Weh and/or his campaign staff will use dishonest and trickery to win. We do not support that in any way. This is our opinion.

Oh my.

I texted someone I know in Weh's campaign asking "have you guys been hacked?"

And -- talk about rapid response -- just a few seconds later, the Tweet in question was gone.

The campaign later told me that indeed the account had been hacked. Or something like that. Apparently there was a contract dispute with a web designer. Weh's folks say the company didn't deliver what was promised (and you can see above what the company says.)

Apparently the  "DO NOT VOTE FOR ALLEN WEH!" message also appeared on the campaign's Facebook page, but it was gone before I was able to see it. The message on the message board also was zapped within minutes, although I had it up in my browser, so I was able to copy it.

I must have been the only reporter/political junkie to see it, because I didn't see any re-tweets or commentary about it.

I'm not taking sides in the dispute over the contract, I just share it as a cautionary tale about modern politics. Keep a close eye on your social media and change your passwords often!