From the looks of it, the situation is pretty benign and straight-forward. It appears as though a Mihos campaign mirror Website belongs to his Cape Cod c-stores, and that the campaign did not report this as an in-kind contribution.
Yet the HubPolitics posts are pretty squishy and gentle. They reported who owned the site, didn't see a corresponding entry on Mihos' filings, and asked whether this might be a violation. Sounds like a case for First Amendment Man to me.
So instead of saying, "Oops," and making it right, Mihos' minions threatened about libel and tried to have the site host take the post or maybe even the site down. The Boston Herald coverage is here.
Maybe the grocery god really, really dislikes bloggers. Even so, this is a pretty stupid tactic when he's running for office and trying to snag voters' minds.
Check the original here. It's pretty spongy, with the heading Possible Campaign Violation by Mihos. If a newspaper had discovered and run this bit, you can be damned sure it would have been firmer and snarkier.
The follow-up post is here. It explains how the campaign is claiming it is a private site, but that the WHOIS info contradicts that. Cut me a very thin slice -- my 12-year-old knows this registration stuff. Mihos' folks should have.
Link note: After the hoo-ha it caused, the questionable site, www.christymihos.net, is no longer a mirror of the main Mihos site and the WHOIS info no longer is accessible. A public apology to HubPolitics' Aaron and Matt Margolis would likely be more meaningful than trying to hide the problem.
As HubPolitics reports:
At 5:18 PM, Peter Pendergast, Christy Mihos's campaign manager, also responded to this post and accused Hub Politics of publishing falsehoods and libel. It was around this time that Hub Politics was issued a takedown request initiated by a representative of the Mihos Campaign for Governor, claiming that we published information that was "libelous" and violated our hosting company's Acceptable Use Policy (AUP).If there has ever been a candidate who doesn't get it, it's Kerry Healey, but Mihos is hot on her trail. Not owning up to a problem, screaming "Lies and libel!" without solid cause, pretending that registrar data don't exist, slamming a blogger instead of taking responsibility, and trying to take down this news source through the host add up to some poor thinking.
Is this the kind of guy we would want on Beacon Street?
The best we can hope for here is that Pendergast was operating as a rogue, without Christy's knowledge or okay. From here, it sure looks like a rich guy thinking he can do whatever he wants. I don't believe that's what a public official should be about.
Nit and grit follow-up: The details on the site registration appear on MediaNation, where Dan researched the sign-then-switch. It does look like the Mihos folk were sloppy and then deceptive, as HubPolitics claimed. Dan calls this hypertechnical and thinks the Magolis lads are making too much of it. I disagree with both judgments, but I'm glad he sorted and sifted.
5/16 followup: This is a cockroach that just won't die. Maybe the wife of the guy who registered this site can clear it up. Start here. Warning though, if you click through to her post, grab a cup of coffee or a stronger drink. She admits that she writes looooong.
Tags: massmarrier, HubPolitics, Mihos, bloggers, Massachusetts