The Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) has cleared Irvine Mayoral candidate Mary Ann Gaido, the Irvine Community News & Views and TheLiberalOC after a complaint from Irvine Mayoral candidate Gang Chen over his charges of free and favorable coverage.
According to the September 7 letter, the FPPC’s letter to Gang Chen had this:
“You alleged Mary Ann Gaido and her committee failed to report the resources she received from Irvine Community News and Views and Liberal OC in connection with her 2016 Mayoral campaign.
Under the Act, payments made by any broadcasting station (including cable television operator, programmer or producer), website, or a regularly published newspaper, magazine, or other periodical of general circulation, including any Internet or electronic publication that routinely carries news and commentary of general interests, for the cost of covering or carrying a news story, commentary, or editorial is not considered a contribution to the candidate or committee…..There was insufficient evidence to demonstrate that Irvine Community News & Views and the Liberal OC do not fall within this exception.”
So much for the frantic social media posts that Mary Ann Gaido is under investigation. And this is yet another example of how Gang Chen is woefully unprepared to handle the job as Mayor of Irvine.
Gaido issued this note to supporters and it has an interesting detail about her opponents:
Friends, I proudly signed the City of Irvine CODE OF FAIR CAMPAIGN PRACTICES when filing papers to run for Mayor of Irvine on August 12, 2016.
“There are basic principles of decency, honesty, and fair play which every candidate for public office in the State of California has a moral obligation to observe and uphold in order that, after vigorously contested but fairly conducted campaigns, our citizens may exercise their constitutional right to a free and untrammeled choice and the will of the people may be fully expressed on the issues.
THEREFORE: I SHALL NOT USE OR PERMIT the use of character defamation, whispering campaigns, libel, slander or scurrilous attacks on any candidate or his or her personal or family life.”
Not only have I signed this pledge, but I have committed myself to conducting a campaign with integrity.
We are now 60 days away from election day, and the dirty campaign tactics have started!
For the past few weeks, my opponents have been conducting what are called “push polls.” These are designed to spread false information about candidates and drag down their image among voters. These “push polls” are less about gauging where candidates stand in the eyes of voters, but more about testing which lies can be used later in the campaign.
I am appalled to see that my opponents have not only failed to sign the City’s CODE OF FAIR CAMPAIGN PRACTICES, but have engaged in spreading vicious lies and attacks on my integrity.
To make matters worse, one candidate went so far as to file a false complaint against my campaign with the Fair Political Practices Commission — a complaint that has no merit and is only designed to create false negative headlines.
My campaign is committed to putting the people of Irvine back in control. No longer can our city remain under the control of big developers who will spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on push polls and negative attack mailers designed to lie to the Irvine voters about my campaign.
I call on people of good will to stand against this negative campaigning and insist on the right of every voter to full and equal participation in a fundamentally honest electoral process.