Updated: Dem mailer includes West’s Social Security number; challenger claims ‘unprecedented new low’by George Bennett | September 20th, 2010
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this blog post incorrectly reported that the anti-West mailer was sent by Democratic U.S. Rep. Ron Klein’s campaign. The mailer was sent by the Florida Democratic Party.
The Florida Democratic Party sent out a mailer last week detailing Republican congressional challenger Allen West’s 2005 tax lien and court orders to pay delinquent credit card bills. West is challenging Democratic U.S. Rep. Ron Klein.
The mailer includes a reproduction of the $11,081 tax lien filed against West in Marion County, Indiana, and paid off four months later. The document, pulled from public records, includes a column titled “Identifying Number” that shows West’s nine-digit Social Security number. Although the number isn’t specifically identified as a Social Security number, West campaign manager Josh Grodin said there is no mistaking what the number is.
West called the mailer “an unprecedented new low in American politics.”
Florida Democratic Party spokesman Eric Jotkoff responded by accusing West of “paranoia” and adding: “After making every effort to remove all of Allen West’s private information, unlike West who refuses to apologize to Florida’s taxpayers for not paying his taxes and his bills, we apologize for the oversight of not redacting this information from the public record included in the mailer. To end, while this mail piece does not explicitly identify any Social Security number, in order to stop the crazy West accusations, we will pay for identify theft monitoring for the next two years.”