Swanson Defends Himself

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The latest volley in the Brad Swanson vs. Rose Ferlita county commission race came this week in the mail. Swanson defends himself against a Ferlita brochure that details his failures in school and business by describing his problems as “youthful indiscretions during my post-teenage years at USF.”

I wasn't the most attentive student at USF, and I certainly wasn't the smartest.

Based on his own admissions to Sara Rosenbaum of the St. Pete Times, that may be an understatement. Swanson then turns his guns back on Ferlita:

But, please don't let her attack distract you from the real issues on Election Day. Her liberal beliefs and voting record — both of which are indefensible.

I'm guessing that while bombing out of college, Swanson didn't get a chance to take an ethics course, or if he did, he didn't get it. He kicked off his campaign with a spurious and vague assertion that the "local gay and lesbian community" endorsed Ferlita. Not one single GLBT organization has done so. Then he implied he had the endosement of the local firefighters union, when it is Ferlita who has the backing of the Tampa chapter of the IAFF. Finally, and most maddening to me, is his continued misquoting of a column I wrote in the Weekly Planet to attempt to say that Ferlita is pro-marijuana.

The two Republicans are seeking their party's nomination, and the winner of the Sept. 5 primary will face Democrat Mary Mulhern, a former Planet arts critic and political activist.

(Disclosure: I worked in Ferlita's 1999 Tampa City Council campaign.)

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