GOP candidate McLeod's Democrat vote questioned

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Wright McLeod, an Augusta Republican seeking to oust Democratic U.S. Rep. John Barrow, says he voted in Georgia’s 2008 Democratic presidential primary to oppose Barack Obama.

McLeod  SPECIAL
SPECIAL
McLeod

McLeod said Monday that he cast his ballot for Bill Richardson, but Richardson, a former governor of New Mexico, didn’t receive any votes in the Richmond County precinct where McLeod was registered to vote.

The registration was confirmed by the Richmond County Board of Elections, and vote totals for the precinct are from the Georgia Secretary of State’s office.

New 12th District boundaries, which prompted Barrow to move from Savannah to Augusta, favor Republicans, so national GOP groups think they can win the seat.

Richardson received just 0.2 percent of the vote in Georgia, probably because he had quit the presidential race more than three weeks earlier.

The candidates who drew votes at McLeod’s precinct were Obama, who won the primary, then-U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton and former Sen. John Edwards. Obama beat Clinton – his nearest rival – by a margin of more than 2-to-1.

On the same day, McLeod instead could have voted in the GOP primary – a tight three-way race won by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.

The records complicate the Augusta lawyer’s attempt to counter revelations that he voted in five Democratic primaries since 1998 and gave $7,100 to a statewide Democratic candidate.

In addition, he faces a Federal Election Commission complaint by rival candidate and Augusta businessman Rick Allen that he violated campaign law.

As of late Tuesday, McLeod hadn’t responded to a phone call and an e-mail seeking comment. Spokeswoman Holly Croft failed to respond to three phone calls and an e-mail.

Allen’s campaign manager, Scott Paradise, accused McLeod of “defending his vote in the 2008 Democratic presidential primary with a fib.”

The voting and campaign donations issues surfaced Monday and were aired at a Vidalia candidates forum where all four GOP candidates participated.

Official records show McLeod voted in the Democrats’ general and runoff primaries in 2002, their general primary in 2004, their 2008 presidential primary and their 2010 general primary.

They also show he contributed $7,100 to Rob Teilhet, an unsuccessful candidate for the 2010 Democratic nomination for attorney general. McLeod’s wife, Sheri, gave Teilhet $3,600.

On Monday, Croft attributed McLeod’s voting record to Democratic dominance of Richmond County.

Most local offices have been held by Democrats, and the only way to have a voice in local matters has been to vote in Democratic primaries, she said.

Croft said McLeod voted in the presidential primary, which included no local contests, to back a “lesser liberal” – Richardson. McLeod said much the same at the Vidalia forum.

Croft said the McLeods contributed to Teilhet because they were close friends in law school.

According to a news account, McLeod said he couldn’t have graduated without Teilhet’s
help.

Another candidate, state Rep. Lee Anderson, of Grovetown, didn’t respond to requests for comment.

The fourth candidate, Dublin lawyer Maria Sheffield, declined to comment directly.

“I think Mr. McLeod will continue to explain himself ... on this issue,” Sheffield said. “I’m going to focus on beating John Barrow, and on veterans and Obamacare and regulations that are hurting farmers and small businesses.”

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itsanotherday1
48161
Points
itsanotherday1 06/06/12 - 07:37 am
3
1
How was his voting record

How was his voting record uncovered? I thought that was secret unless you revealed it yourself, and why would he do that?

Little Lamb
48878
Points
Little Lamb 06/06/12 - 07:47 am
5
0
Secret

It is a secret for whom you voted. But whether you voted and in which primary is recorded.

Little Lamb
48878
Points
Little Lamb 06/06/12 - 07:48 am
4
1
Edwards

Come to think of it, Wright McLeod looks like John Edwards, kind of.

shootamonkey
12
Points
shootamonkey 06/06/12 - 08:05 am
0
0
Wright McLeod
Unpublished

He got caught with his hand in the cookie jar and then LIED about it!!
He not only looks like John Edwards but, apparently, he also struggles with the truth! This should pretty much wrap up his campaign!

dekankcub
5
Points
dekankcub 06/06/12 - 08:15 am
3
1
Good ole Boy

If "dirt" must be brought up on this candidate, then it's interesting that Wright's competitors haven't dug into how his law practice manages/oversees local Homeowner Associations! If Wright is elected and treats his constituents like he does homeowners God help us......but, if you are rich and powerful....or in the Columbia County cliche...you'll love this guy!

whiteflighttocc1
20
Points
whiteflighttocc1 06/06/12 - 08:22 am
0
0
2nd that
Unpublished

I agree dekancub. he trashed our HOA also. we are in trouble if this democrat gets elected for our republican dominated area. he is clearly a democrat in disguise.

HOW CAN A BLATENT DEMOCRAT GET THIS FAR IN THE PRIMARY AND NOBODY KNOW THAT HE IS REALLY A DEMOCRAT!!!!!! OUR SYSTEM IS BROKEN.

JohnBrownAug
1962
Points
JohnBrownAug 06/06/12 - 08:59 am
2
2
This race is important

This race is important because the winner will likely become our next U.S. Congressman. I imagine Rich Allen is going to have a huge voter turnout in Richmond County. Gulf War, Navy pilot, McLeod better get his campaign in gear and stop with these screw-ups.

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 06/06/12 - 09:00 am
5
1
Shocked

Wright McLeod lie? No way. I'm shocked.

(sarcasm)

That is what he does best.

Little Lamb
48878
Points
Little Lamb 06/06/12 - 09:27 am
4
0
Damage?

From the story above:

Wright McLeod, of Augusta, has said he voted in Georgia’s 2008 Democratic presidential primary to oppose soon-to-be president Barack Obama.

That could be a damaging quote for Wright McLeod. John Barrow could use the notion that McLeod did not for for a candidate, but instead only against Obama as the action of a closet racist.

Austin Rhodes
2970
Points
Austin Rhodes 06/06/12 - 09:35 am
1
3
Precinct votes...possible explanation

If you vote absentee, the vote does not show up as precinct specific. Of course, I have no idea if that is what happened there...just a possibility.

My still unsold house is in a neighborhood with an association administrated by Wright's law firm. I never joined the association, but I have been sent bills on several occasions. I have asked them to make the corrections. There are administrative gaffs associated with well over 1000 property owner association members, but I have never seen a case where Wright acted inappropriately or unethically. EVER.

So Insider...what proof do you have that Wright McLeod lied?

Austin Rhodes
2970
Points
Austin Rhodes 06/06/12 - 09:39 am
1
3
Little Lamb...

Barrow can say whatever he wants...but he is NOT about to suggest the to GAZILLION white people in his new district, that white people who vote against OBAMA are racist.

Did you vote FOR McCain or AGAINST Obama in 2008? I voted AGAINST...and color had not a damn thing to do with it.

Austin Rhodes
2970
Points
Austin Rhodes 06/06/12 - 09:50 am
1
3
I call BS

Insider...an anonymous poster can claim anything at anytime. You gotta do better than that. I have seen no proof of professional ethics complaints against Wright, nor have there been sanctions.

So...prove your claim, or withdraw it.

...and I have no idea if he voted absentee or not, but if he did, the situation is solidly explained.

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 06/06/12 - 10:23 am
7
0
Sorry, Austin. Wright was

Sorry, Austin. Wright was unable to bully me and you won't be able to either.

The truth is the truth. I'm here to speak it. It is up to you to believe it. You can believe that Elvis works as a greeter at Wal-Mart for all I care.

JohnBrownAug
1962
Points
JohnBrownAug 06/06/12 - 10:03 am
2
2
Well, maybe this won't help

Well, maybe this won't help Rick Allen or Lee Anderson. Maybe McLeod will draw some Democratic voters to come over and vote for him in the primary since they know he voted Democrat.

whiteflighttocc1
20
Points
whiteflighttocc1 06/06/12 - 10:06 am
0
0
GET ALONG
Unpublished

CANT WE ALL JUST GET ALONG??? I KNOW LOTS OF ATTORNEYS THAT ARE DEMOCRATS FOR SOME REASON. I DONT UNDERSTAND WHY BUT WHAT THE CONVERSATION SHOULD BE IS WETHER WRIGHT IS A DEMOCRAT RUNNING FOR A REPUBLICAN SEAT OR IS HE JUST A REPUBLICAN THAT HAS MADE A TON OF BONEHEAD DECISIONS IN THE PAST WITH HIS VOTING RECORD.

mSeda
8
Points
mSeda 06/06/12 - 11:01 am
6
1
For what it's worth, voter

For what it's worth, voter records do show whether an individual voted absentee. No vindication there.

lw9474
18
Points
lw9474 06/06/12 - 12:36 pm
8
0
As Joe Friday says Just the facts, ma'am

Actually, Wright McLeod's voting record provides all the proof you
need. Please reference his voting record at
http://www.redstate.com/erick/files/2012/06/McLeonVoteHistory.png. As
you can see, the times when he voted absentee are indicated by an "A"
after the election date. The record clearly does not show an "A"
after the presidential primary preference in 2008. Thus, he voted
in-person at a precinct
(http://www.redstate.com/erick/files/2012/06/primaryturnout2008.pdf)
where only Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, Chris Dodd,
and Joe Biden received votes. The facts are there and they don't lie.

GADawg1
13
Points
GADawg1 06/06/12 - 01:00 pm
5
1
Seriously...

I believe in light of all the recent "findings" concerning Mr. McLeod and his questionable campaign tactics along with this new information about his contradicting past voting record it's clear that this guy has absolutely no business being elected to Congress on our behalf. His actions have shown him to be “sneaky”, manipulative, deceitful, unethical,.....the list goes on and on. He has yet to come out and truly address the FEC complaints and allegations from the Allen campaign against his campaign, choosing rather to dodge and duck the truth at every turn. He can't even get his own story straight with the people in his campaign and he appears to just be content with hoping that the primary vote comes before these allegations can be properly investigated by the FEC. If that's not slimy, sneaky, and deceitful I don't know what is. If he believes that he is wrongly being accused of these violations why doesn't he just come out and say so and show some proof to support his side.
And the fact that he has voted Democratic so many times in the recent past just goes to show that he is indeed a "closet Liberal" who will do or say anything to get elected, including masking as a conservative Republican. Give me a break! Does he think the conservative voters of this district are that stupid to believe this mess? It’s one thing after another. I personally will be voting for Rick W. Allen because I believe he is the best candidate for the job and because I truly believe he will do what he says he will do if he reaches Washington. Heck, any of the other candidates are much better options to vote for come July than shady and dishonest Wright McLeod

whiteflighttocc1
20
Points
whiteflighttocc1 06/06/12 - 01:10 pm
0
0
right on
Unpublished

right on right on... Closet Liberal... imagine the damage Wright could do if he has manipulated us to this point. He is bad news!!!! HE SHOULD DROP OUT OF RACE IN LIGHT OF THIS SO THAT THE PEOPLE HAVE MORE CLEAR CHOICES INSTEAD OF SPLITTING THE VOTE AND FORCING A RUNOFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

JohnBrownAug
1962
Points
JohnBrownAug 06/06/12 - 02:40 pm
2
1
I'm trying to clarify things.

I'm trying to clarify things. If McLeod had voted as an absentee it would have been marked as such and it's not marked?

Oh, I see how it's marked after the date if it's an absentee vote. Dang, McLeod can't win for losing with this thing.

JohnBrownAug
1962
Points
JohnBrownAug 06/06/12 - 04:45 pm
1
1
I heard Wright trying to

I heard Wright trying to explain things on Austin's show and he really didn't make sense. Austin tried to help him, but none of it made sense. Make no mistake, I'm still for Wright because he is a well spoken, combat veteran and successful attorney.

So we found out he voted Democrat, but said he only did it because he opposed Obama. He said he voted for Bill Richardson, but no vote for him showed up. Then he said he voted absentee, but the vote for him is not designated as an absentee vote.

The whole thing just doesn't make sense. He felt such an overwhelming need to oppose Obama he voted for such an inconsequential candidate as Richardson who not even single vote showed up for? None of it makes sense. Let's drive on, Wright.

GADawg1
13
Points
GADawg1 06/06/12 - 05:07 pm
4
0
JohnBrownAug...

How can you still want to support a candidate who is obviously lying? That is what dishonest individuals sound like, they don't make any sense! He is scrambling to try and find some way to justify or wash over what has been presented against him and he has now honest way of doing it without burying himself. How can you justify being able to trust him to do what he says he will do when he reaches Washington? He has repeatedly out right lied about these FEC violations and his prior voting record and he is dishonestly trying to mislead the conservatives in this district in hopes that they will vote for him. I believe he has shown his true character very apparent by these actions, and it's not a very honorable character!

His own campaign website states:
"Wright is a constitutional conservative. He is committed to strengthening national security, creating more jobs for American workers, reducing the national debt and decreasing the size of government. He is also a strong proponent of the Second Amendment, traditional marriage and protecting the rights of the unborn."

How can we trust that he is committed to these conservative causes when he has shown no proof that he can be trusted to tell the truth?

whiteflighttocc1
20
Points
whiteflighttocc1 06/06/12 - 05:23 pm
0
0
gadawg1
Unpublished

all good points. i dont understand why anyone would defend him at this point. this is serious and will be an issue for him continually. i am disapointed that austin defended or tried to help him. wright is not a successful attorney or he would have to manage a bunch of HOA's for $300 a month each. he would have enough legal work to keep him busy if he was a good attorney and wouldnt need to do that type of work. no other attorney i know of does that.

HE SHOULD DROP OUT OF RACE NOW SO THAT PEOPLE CAN CHOOSE BETWEEN ALLEN AND ANDERSON!!!!!

JohnBrownAug
1962
Points
JohnBrownAug 06/06/12 - 06:19 pm
1
1
When I see new names

When I see new names commenting on one issue, I always wonder if it's an orchestrated move by those in the fray. I am not defending what McLeod did. It was a mistake when he started to tapdance. He should have fessed up right off and, as thousands of others did, say he voted Democrat in the past, but is now a firm conservative
Republican. It worked for Sonny Perdue and many, many more. NONE of his explanations make sense.

I was kind of on the fence for quite a while between all three. I actually once backed Lee, kind of. Gradually, I ruled out Lee although he is an excellent county politician. Rick Allen simply has too many connections all involved with his business that I'm not comfortable with.

McLeod has the ability and has honorably served this country as only a few have. Come to think of it, this is D-Day. I encourage all veterans to support McLeod. He's one of us.

This federal election is going to be the most important in history. We need Republicans in the House, Senate and Presidency. We need our strongest candidate to take on Barrow.

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 06/06/12 - 06:42 pm
3
0
I've said before that Wright

I've said before that Wright will fit right in if elected.

That's why I would never vote for him.

This whole debacle is very revealing about him and his character. He is a typical politician.

Willow Bailey
20605
Points
Willow Bailey 06/06/12 - 07:14 pm
2
0
What is Wright McLeod thinking...

Now, I don't really feel that I can trust him with my vote. I don't like any of his explanations, especially the one about giving campaign contributions because he went to school with someone. Financial and voting support should be given out of respect and agreement with a person's values, not favors. I'm very disappointed in all of this, I had planned to vote for him.

Willow Bailey
20605
Points
Willow Bailey 06/06/12 - 07:24 pm
2
0
johnbrownaug, I like hearing

johnbrownaug, I like hearing from new names. Sure they are likely to be in the fray, which also means they have a message worth exploring.
Gadawg1, doesn't appear over zealous or that he/she is making it personal.

JohnBrownAug
1962
Points
JohnBrownAug 06/06/12 - 07:38 pm
2
1
Willow, I enjoy hearing from

Willow, I enjoy hearing from new voices, too, but I'm forever the skeptic.

Little Lamb
48878
Points
Little Lamb 06/07/12 - 08:49 am
0
0
Election Sport

There is no shame in voting in the other party's primary. It's good sport. I've done it numerous times. But what we see here in McLeod's deception should be troubling to voters. It is no shame for McLeod to vote for Hillary in an attempt to deny Obama the nomination. But don't lie to the voters four years later and say that you voted for Richardson, a candidate who had already withdrawn before the primary and for whom a vote would not stop anybody.

McLeod should have told the truth.

Please re-read JohnBrown's 5:45 p.m. post above (second paragraph in particular).

SRD
472
Points
SRD 06/07/12 - 11:35 am
0
0
Can you spell "Rat"? I mean SMELL

This smells pretty stinky to me... I have interviewed this man several times and checked him out really well. Whenever a candidate is in the lead there is always some sort of stinky, smelly questionable article or story trumped up either by an opponet, the opponets' supporters, or the left. This man served and risked is life for our Country and now out of that same love for our freedoms wants to continue to serve. He didn't move from a different district as others just to get on the ticket, he isn't a part of the good Ol' Boy network that has been a thorn in the side of citizens for years, he is simply trying to make an honest effort to work and keep States Rights on the Side of the State amongst other reasons. There are no other motives, he doesn't need the money, and he doesn't need the fame or power. Look at the motives and follow the money, in there lies the truth.

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