GOP Accused Of Smearing Candidate -- Courant.com

Full story: Hartford Courant

Democratic first selectman candidate Justin P. Good's campaign is accusing local Republican leaders of conducting a smear campaign against him on the eve of the election.
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Robert Blair

Amston, CT

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#1
Oct 27, 2007
 
This is not the first time that police have been abusive with towns people. Selectmen should know this by now and there should be a change in residet troopers after so many years as they become polictical and complacent after awhile. I thought there was a policy that resident troopers should be rotated after a certain time. There are many street lights out in town and it seems as though the police have trouble seeing them, This has become especially important as there has been an assult reported accross from Chesterfields as some people have to park there as the lights in the Maple St. parking lot have been troubled for over two years. Mr Marsh and Mr Good seem to have run a very positive campaign.
Frustrated Democrat

East Hampton, CT

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#2
Oct 28, 2007
 
This is also not the first time Chester Republicans have launched a smear campaign. Last election they spread around that one of the Democratic Selectboard candidates was a Jew (?!?!) who had locked up her husband in a hospital and was sleeping with a family friend. This good woman's family is still shaken by the baseness of this slander.

It's too bad really because the fuss over this will take away from the fact that the Republican candidates have brought in a sewer that will change the whole of the village, concentrating development along the very creek that the WPCA said they wanted to protect. It will divert attention from the fact that the town budget is being very poorly handled. Take a close look and note all the transfers from department to department for example. It will take away from the fact that Selectman Marsh takes credit for things that he had nothing to do with. It also diverts from the fact that Selectman Marsh spends an inordinate amount of town time working on his personal business.

My name isn't signed here because Selectman Marsh makes a point of getting back at people who criticize him and he will probably win the election. Too bad for Chester
Sickened Citizen

United States

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#3
Oct 28, 2007
 
The article omits the following critical detail about why the reporter was turned on to the story. An anonymous police officer made an unsolicited phone call to the reporter to offer information about the details of the arrest.
Ask any police officer if they've ever called up a reporter to offer details of an arrest prior to an election. Highly unusual and highly unethical, given in particular that the police report was falsified by the arresting officer.

The reporter then received numerous phone calls from concerned citizens, citing the falsified details of the report. The only thing naked here are the lies and the intention.

Marsh has an established record of running dirty campaigns. Lori Anne Clymas was devastated by the deeply hurtful lies which were spread about her during the campaign two years ago, as was her family.

It is important to note how lies as vicious as those currently circulating affect family and friends of those targeted. It is my understanding that Good's girlfriend works with children and has lost students over this. How sad to wreck reputations and livelihoods in a small town campaign.

Lastly, Good's Common Sense Platform is an inspired and inspiring issue driven campaign. We have all lost out from the obfuscation of the rich public dialogue he is capable of conducting.

I will not be printing my name either, as I also fear retribution from an activist cop. Brown has a reputation as a bully in this town as well, and does no service to the integrity of the police department he currently serves under. I deeply respect the good and hard work that police officers engage in on a daily basis, and it is sad to see their often courageous efforts undermined by a bad apple.
Julie

Guilford, CT

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#4
Oct 28, 2007
 
This does not make sense. An anonymous police officer made the call to a reporter to look into a story where the police report was allegedly falsified? Why would a police officer want to have someone looking into a falsified report? If the report was falsified the police officers would want as little scrutiny of it as possible.
Then numerous citizens call about a report that they have no way of getting their hands on except through Justin or his lawyer (it is not currently available through FOI). So are the numerous citizens who called part of the Good campaign? This would make sense considering that by reading this article I get the impression that the Good campaign is smearing a Trooper in the hopes that it will cause confusion and maybe get a few extra votes through sympathy. Well, if that was the goal it has backfired I and many others think it is dirty politics and will now not be voting Democratic for Selectmen. Although registered Democrat I believe that my responsibilty as a citizens is to choose the best person for the job regardless of party affiliation - and the best person for the job of 1st Selectman is not someone who will participate in smear campaigns especially against someone who is not even running for office (Trooper Brown).
Sickened Citizen wrote:
The article omits the following critical detail about why the reporter was turned on to the story. An anonymous police officer made an unsolicited phone call to the reporter to offer information about the details of the arrest.
Ask any police officer if they've ever called up a reporter to offer details of an arrest prior to an election. Highly unusual and highly unethical, given in particular that the police report was falsified by the arresting officer.
The reporter then received numerous phone calls from concerned citizens, citing the falsified details of the report. The only thing naked here are the lies and the intention.
Marsh has an established record of running dirty campaigns. Lori Anne Clymas was devastated by the deeply hurtful lies which were spread about her during the campaign two years ago, as was her family.
It is important to note how lies as vicious as those currently circulating affect family and friends of those targeted. It is my understanding that Good's girlfriend works with children and has lost students over this. How sad to wreck reputations and livelihoods in a small town campaign.
Lastly, Good's Common Sense Platform is an inspired and inspiring issue driven campaign. We have all lost out from the obfuscation of the rich public dialogue he is capable of conducting.
I will not be printing my name either, as I also fear retribution from an activist cop. Brown has a reputation as a bully in this town as well, and does no service to the integrity of the police department he currently serves under. I deeply respect the good and hard work that police officers engage in on a daily basis, and it is sad to see their often courageous efforts undermined by a bad apple.
Frustrated Democrats

East Hampton, CT

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#5
Oct 29, 2007
 
Julie - We have no reason to believe that Colin Poitras lied to Justin when Colin contacted Justin. However, given the layout of the article, I personally have reason to believe Colin is a poor writer.

It is interesting that Julie as a Democrat would support the Republican team who is well known for a history of smear, locally, on a state level and nationally.

Chester will be the loser if the Marsh/Watrous 'team' gets back in.

On closer looks and reports from Town Hall, Marsh has been mismanaging the town budget.
Marsh spends a good deal of town time working his personal business, taking long lunches and leaving early.
Marsh has taken credit for things he had little or nothing to do with. Biodiesel, the Town Plan, Economic Development.
Tom Marsh rarely follows statutory requirements by withholdinginformation from the other Selectmen. Meeting minutes and agendas are rarely available before selectman meetings. Now in the case of Watrous, that may be a wash, but Heft knows how things work, and Marsh doesn't like that. The town did not 'win' the recent FOIA investigation and there is now another case pending against the town, and a third ethics case being considered.
Julie, IF you are really a Democrat, get in contact with the town Democratic Committee to learn more about these charges and more, all of which can be corroborated. If you are still bent on voting for the Republican team, then heaven help our precious town.
Julie

Guilford, CT

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#6
Oct 29, 2007
 
OK here we try again -is anyone else trying to post and having it disappear?

We have no reason to believe that Trooper Brown targeted Justin yet it is being presented as being proven. If it happened there must be some proof (like the video). Justin admitted in the Valley Courier that he did need to correct the minor issue of his drivers license and he stated that he regretted the open container of alcohol. That was admirable and then both issues could be set aside as mistakes. Then he started denying doing ANYTHING "improper" -this makes myself and others question how guilty he truly is. Calling the motivation of Trooper Brown into question was not a good move - by his own account he was not driving a vehicle that was registered to him so how would Trooper Brown have been able to target him? We know by the time that it would have been dark so it could not have been a visual identification. Also, why would Trooper Brown have wanted to target someone that he may soon have to work with? To state that a Marsh/Brown relationship would be the reason you would need to show some proof that the relationship is deep enough for this to occur. We do not go out on a limb for people that we just enjoy a good working relationship with. Trooper Brown reports to Tom Marsh the same way he reported to Martin Heft when Martin was in office. Martin and Trooper Brown displayed the same type of mutual respect relationship that appears to exist between Marsh and Brown.
I agree that some Republican campaigns have participated in smear campaigns but I also see Democrats who have and are doing the same thing and then crying foul.
If you are right and Marsh has been a poor 1st Selectman than the Good campaign should be presenting these facts and not starting smear campaigns against a public employee for doing the job he is paid to do.
If you choose to go into the gutter yourself then you can not point to the gutter and claim that is where your opponent is. This makes you look worse. The moral high ground only works if that is where you yourself reside.
mik

Birds Landing, CA

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#7
Oct 29, 2007
 
I remember reading an article in the courant shortly after Good's arrest about Adam Brown obtaining a full time position from Marsh and I thought it was odd timing - anyone have any info on that?
mik

Birds Landing, CA

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#8
Oct 29, 2007
 
Julie - there was some promotion or more hours that was awarded to Brown shortly after htis occurence. i read it in the courant, but can't access it today. perhapsa that was the motivation - i don't trust anybody anymore - corruption is so prevalant - I do, however, trust Good - as i know what his motivations are to get into a leadership position in Chester - and i know this man who has a PhD in politicval philosophy is ready to take this tiny community and make it a model for other towns who stand at the brink of becoming anywhere usa.

To state that a Marsh/Brown relationship would be the reason you would need to show some proof that the relationship is deep enough for this to occur.
Frustrated Democrats

East Hampton, CT

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#9
Oct 29, 2007
 
In Chester, taking the moral highground didn't help in the last election. In spite of the vicious nature of the claims against Lori Clymas, the Democratic Committee stuck to the issues, and lost the election. Same with the sewer issue, and apparently same with this campign as well.

This isn't about the smear, it's about the people who initially started the smear calling Colin Poitras, spreading vicious emails, and highschool photos of Justin in a Halloween costume, stealing lawn signs for god's sake and the all phone calls - the Republicans and Republican State Central.

Colin Poitras contacted Justin Good AFTER he had been contacted by people passing aspersions about Justin. Justin did not call Poitras first.

There are very many Democrats who think Adam Brown has done a good job over the years. Justin made same mistake that about 80% of the Chester population (Democrats and Republicans) makes every summer. It doesn't mean Justin is a danger to the children of Chester as promoted by the Republican emails and calls, anymore than the rest of us are.

Julie - As self proclaimed Democrat - are you going to align yourselves with the Republicans doing this to call attention away from the real issues in town?

Questionable budget practices. A Selectman who takes town time to work on his own business. A Selectman who does not follow statutory ethics law? A Selectman who takes credit for others accomplishments? A Selectman who will call for votes until he gets the answer he wants? Let's leave the smear behind for a moment and hear how you feel about the above easily documented issues being brought to you now?
Frustrated Democrats

East Hampton, CT

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#10
Oct 29, 2007
 
Oops almost forgot to add this nugget for you Julie. Notes from the Democratic Social - Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz told the crowd at the Social last night that when the state tried to do a workshop on the new voting machines for the elderly in Chester, they got a call from the First Selectman's office saying that he didn't want the workshops because of party politics. Meaning the Secretary of State is a Democrat? and the Selectman's office didn't think that our elderly voters don't need help with new technology? Fifty people heard that statement. What do you that was all about?
Sickened Citizen

United States

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#11
Oct 29, 2007
 
Calling someone unclothed when they show you otherwise is falsifying a police report. And doing so when said person is running for public office, and said police officer spoke in front of other people to the candidate a week prior at the Chester Fair Democratic booth, is serious business.

If Adam Brown went to the trouble of arresting, handcuffing and bringing Justin Good to jail, why didn't he process him as a DUI and afford him the opportunity to take a breathalizer the customary 2 times?

Julie, how would you like it if vicious lies were now circulating about you, spun off of this police report, a brief summary of which only has been available to the public, saying that you were drunk, naked & driving and a danger to children? Would you defend yourself? Accusing Justin Good further, amidst all of the heartwrenching lies he has had to endure in this campaign, of being the dirty one here is like an abuser blaming the victim.
Justin Good

United States

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#12
Oct 29, 2007
 
First, let me clarify an important point: I did not start this. I first learned about a rash of untruths from Mr. Poitras who called me last Thursday to tell me that he was working on an article about the matter. He told me that he had received numerous phone calls relating that the Democratic Candidate for First Selectman in Chester had been arrested, drunk and naked, that he did not live in Chester, and that a high school era photo of him in holloween regalia was circulating as evidence of his debauched mind. I asked him why he would be writing a news story based on rumors and gossip, and he said that one of the phone calls was from a police officer, whose identity he would not reveal, who offered detailed information about the arrest. I asked him if it was normal for him to receive phone calls from police officers offering information about a political candidate two weeks before an election, and he said that it was odd.

So I could have knelt down and accepted a classic, orchestrated character assassination taking place, or stood up and called a spade a spade. I stand by the description of the events in the article and am confident that the charges will be properly addressed in the court of law. And yes, I admit it, I accept culpability for not updating the address on my license and humbly plead guilty, but thatís not what this is about. There is no correspondence between the actual event and the slanderous rumors being purveyed by, among others, a Chester resident who is a member of the CT State Republican Party and a known purveyor of political sleaze tactics.

I have no interest whatsoever in making a fuss about this whole issue. Iím the ideas guy, remember? I actually have a detailed vision of Chesterís (potentially) bright future. I am not a political person, I am a thinker and a communicator, an environmentalist and a philosopher passionately committed to solving the deepest economic and social and environmental problems we face. I have been and will continue to work towards intensifying public debate and participation in considering options and realizing possibilities we have for making life in Chester better, healthier, easier, and more human-scaled for all its citizens. I have been thinking, writing, lecturing, organizing, hosting public forums, and working with Chesterís Conservation and Planning and Zoning boards, our regional planning agency CRERPA, SolarClarity, ChesterFIRST, and others to think hard about how to resolve our current economic and environmental issues with long-term thinking.

The real joy of the campaign to date has been to deepen and spread the conversation about the future of our community, about smart development and about what people love about our unique town. It has been a thrill to get to know so much more of Chester than Iíve known before, to meet so many new wonderful Chesterites in our door-to-door canvassing, to listen to what is on peopleís minds, to share and discuss my ideas about where we might want to go or not go as a town, and to get a deeper sense for the voice of the community. This is the real story. This is the substance I want to talk about, not the seedy stuff like we hear going on in Washington thatís just depressing and drains your energy.

Chester Unafilliated

Newington, CT

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#13
Oct 29, 2007
 
What background does Justin have in becoming a first selectman? Everybody deserves to have certain issues or cases that arise as nobody is perfect especially when you are in the election spotlight. Chester is changing, I feel that the new Chester community of 30+ YOA with families needs to get away from the artsy fartsy mentality and begin to start attracting new tax revenues that can in turn fund education and programs for the community. How much tax revenue are generated by art galleries? almost none. This is the beginning of the new Chester that the current first selectman is pursuing. Who needs an art colony with walking trails? That is not the answer to making our town better.
mik

Birds Landing, CA

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#14
Oct 29, 2007
 
I have yet to hear from Good a proposal for an art colony with walking trails. I have, however, learned so much about his character,intellect, his convictions and his plans for the community that are on practicality and truth from visiting the Solar Clarity blog spot. Check it out and be enlightened. BTW, what is a YOA?
Chester Unafilliated wrote:
What background does Justin have in becoming a first selectman? Everybody deserves to have certain issues or cases that arise as nobody is perfect especially when you are in the election spotlight. Chester is changing, I feel that the new Chester community of 30+ YOA with families needs to get away from the artsy fartsy mentality and begin to start attracting new tax revenues that can in turn fund education and programs for the community. How much tax revenue are generated by art galleries? almost none. This is the beginning of the new Chester that the current first selectman is pursuing. Who needs an art colony with walking trails? That is not the answer to making our town better.
mik

Birds Landing, CA

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#15
Oct 29, 2007
 
Thanks for writing.
Justin Good wrote:
First, let me clarify an important point: I did not start this. I first learned about a rash of untruths from Mr. Poitras who called me last Thursday to tell me that he was working on an article about the matter. He told me that he had received numerous phone calls relating that the Democratic Candidate for First Selectman in Chester had been arrested, drunk and naked, that he did not live in Chester, and that a high school era photo of him in holloween regalia was circulating as evidence of his debauched mind. I asked him why he would be writing a news story based on rumors and gossip, and he said that one of the phone calls was from a police officer, whose identity he would not reveal, who offered detailed information about the arrest. I asked him if it was normal for him to receive phone calls from police officers offering information about a political candidate two weeks before an election, and he said that it was odd.
So I could have knelt down and accepted a classic, orchestrated character assassination taking place, or stood up and called a spade a spade. I stand by the description of the events in the article and am confident that the charges will be properly addressed in the court of law. And yes, I admit it, I accept culpability for not updating the address on my license and humbly plead guilty, but thatís not what this is about. There is no correspondence between the actual event and the slanderous rumors being purveyed by, among others, a Chester resident who is a member of the CT State Republican Party and a known purveyor of political sleaze tactics.
I have no interest whatsoever in making a fuss about this whole issue. Iím the ideas guy, remember? I actually have a detailed vision of Chesterís (potentially) bright future. I am not a political person, I am a thinker and a communicator, an environmentalist and a philosopher passionately committed to solving the deepest economic and social and environmental problems we face. I have been and will continue to work towards intensifying public debate and participation in considering options and realizing possibilities we have for making life in Chester better, healthier, easier, and more human-scaled for all its citizens. I have been thinking, writing, lecturing, organizing, hosting public forums, and working with Chesterís Conservation and Planning and Zoning boards, our regional planning agency CRERPA, SolarClarity, ChesterFIRST, and others to think hard about how to resolve our current economic and environmental issues with long-term thinking.
The real joy of the campaign to date has been to deepen and spread the conversation about the future of our community, about smart development and about what people love about our unique town. It has been a thrill to get to know so much more of Chester than Iíve known before, to meet so many new wonderful Chesterites in our door-to-door canvassing, to listen to what is on peopleís minds, to share and discuss my ideas about where we might want to go or not go as a town, and to get a deeper sense for the voice of the community. This is the real story. This is the substance I want to talk about, not the seedy stuff like we hear going on in Washington thatís just depressing and drains your energy.
mik

Birds Landing, CA

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#16
Oct 29, 2007
 
I have never heard of Good's proposal of an art colony with walking trails. However, I have learned a lot from the Solar Clarity blog spot about his character, his credentials and his plans for the community trhat are based on a solid foundation of practicaltity and truth. Check it out and be enlightened. BTW, what are YOA's?
Chester Unafilliated wrote:
What background does Justin have in becoming a first selectman? Everybody deserves to have certain issues or cases that arise as nobody is perfect especially when you are in the election spotlight. Chester is changing, I feel that the new Chester community of 30+ YOA with families needs to get away from the artsy fartsy mentality and begin to start attracting new tax revenues that can in turn fund education and programs for the community. How much tax revenue are generated by art galleries? almost none. This is the beginning of the new Chester that the current first selectman is pursuing. Who needs an art colony with walking trails? That is not the answer to making our town better.
Julie

Guilford, CT

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#17
Oct 29, 2007
 
Sorry I have missed so many of the things that were addressed to me - I will post separately in order of the previous posts so excuse me in advance for taking up a lot of space.
mik (posts #7 &#8)
No promotions or additional hours were given to Trooper Brown after the arrest. As you identified in the other blog the article was about having a constable position go from part-time to full-time. This has nothing to do with Brown. The Chester Resident State Trooper has been full-time since 1996, long before he came on board.
I have to agree with you that it is hard to trust anyone anymore due to prevalent corruption. That is why I think all allegations, especially publically made ones, need to have all available proof presented along with the allegation - if you can't prove it than you probably shouldn't present it. This particular issue has proof so lets see it and hear it.
Richard Sachs

Manchester, CT

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#18
Oct 29, 2007
 
this is one of the most divisive things i have ever read about chester since moving here in 1973. were this to represent the company line of my neighbors, i'd have to decide between starting a civil war here or just leaving to find another place as nice as chester once was.

ps grow some cajones and sign your name.
Chester Unafilliated wrote:
...I feel that the new Chester community of 30+ YOA with families needs to get away from the artsy fartsy mentality and begin to start attracting new tax revenues that can in turn fund education and programs for the community. How much tax revenue are generated by art galleries? almost none. This is the beginning of the new Chester that the current first selectman is pursuing. Who needs an art colony with walking trails? That is not the answer to making our town better.
A voter

Amston, CT

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#20
Oct 29, 2007
 
I have the deepest respect for the Police,but before you know it Chester is heading for a police dept like Saybrook, out of control, before you know it they will want another new cruiser and the budget will just keep getting higher and higher. There has to be a delicate balance between taxes and services.Thank you to all of chesters emergency people.
.
Julie

Guilford, CT

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#21
Oct 29, 2007
 
Sickened Citizen (post #11)
I agree that calling someone unclothed when they show you otherwise is falsifying a police report. Have you seen the police report? Are you sure that this is fact? If Trooper Brown alleged that Justin was unclothed then why wasn't he charged with it? You are right this is serious business - so lets see the proof and see who is telling the truth.
By all accounts Justin passed the roadside sobriety test so there was no probable cause for Trooper Brown to administer the breathalizer the "customary 2 times". Even if requested by the arrestee with no probable cause it would not stand up in court. If Justin was thinking that night that he really wanted absolute proof that he was sober I wish he had thought to swing by the Shoreline Clinic for a blood alcohol test on his way home. In my opinion Justin does not need to prove he was sober - the lack of a DUI charge indicates that this is true.
As to your questions- No, I would not want vicious lies circulating about me and Yes I would defend myself. HOWEVER, I would defend myself by using documented facts and by not starting more rumors.
I would also make sure that as I defended myself I only used the truth and spoke very carefully because I would know that every half-truth, lie and mis-statement would come back to bite me.
If I were in Justin's shoes I would not allege that the timing of the arrest was "odd" and I would not allow my political advisor to be quoted questioning the "motivation for stopping Good" unless I offered corroborating evidence to back it up. It wasn't his vehicle and it was dark out - how would Trooper Brown have known that it was him?
I would address the actual rumors (if the following responses are true it is only by media report - I have not seen any related documentation) I would deny being naked and I would deny being DUI - I would also point out that no such charges were made.
I would NOT say that I had not done "anything improper" especially if I have already admitted that the (minor) driver's license charge was true and that I did have an open container of alcohol in my vehicle. I would probably address the open conatiner of alcohol again by apologizing or expressing regret for thoughtlessly having it in the vehicle and I would reiterate that I was not drinking from it during the time I was in the vehicle (as long it was absolutely true that I had not).
I would make the arrest report and/or the video available to the reporter to back up any statements I made.
I would NOT have made any statements regarding were the rumours started from unless I could back it up.
So to sum it up: I would only address the rumors themselves, I would not start new rumors and I would make sure that every statement I made could be verified and backed up.

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