UPDATE 9:00 pm: Here’s an excerpt from ARLnow’s recap of Bruce Shuttleworth’s press conference today:
Dubbing the incident “Petition-gate,” Shuttleworth ripped in to his Democratic opponent, 11-term incumbent Rep. Jim Moran, accusing Moran and his supporters of having “cheated the people.”
“I think this sordid episode makes it clear that my opponent and his supporters will do anything, resort to almost anything to deny a reasonable choice,” Shuttleworth said to a small crowd of supporters and 2-3 journalists. “What kind of pathetic, smoke-filled backroom, Tammany Hall corruption is going on around here?”
Without giving specifics, Shuttleworth said officials misplaced or lost a portion of his campaign’s petition signatures, leading to the initial determination that he had come up 18 signatures short. Shortly after his campaign filed a federal lawsuit against several officials — including Moran’s brother, Virginia Democratic Party Chairman Brian Moran — Shuttleworth said the missing signatures were found.
“Somewhat less than miraculously, when confronted with a lawsuit, those hard-to-find missing petitions magically showed up,” Shuttleworth said. “It has been made very clear that challenges to the throne are not welcome.”
“After more than a quarter century of Jim Moran at the helm of this party machine, when petitions for getting on the ballot of the United States Congress can be lost or misplaced for one second — one second! – what kind of banana republic is he trying to turn Northern Virginia in to?” Shuttleworth said emphatically. “How can this happen in America? Who will be held accountable?”
“There has been a grotesque miscarriage of justice,” Shuttleworth continued. “Without the recourse of legal action, I would not have made it on this ballot, and your voice would not have been heard… If the full truth in this case is ever revealed, I think voters will be very interested to see who is behind the curtain.”
Shuttleworth said “fighting corruption” was the main reason he entered the race.
“This is exactly the kind of anti-democratic nonsense that encouraged me to run in the first place,” Shuttleworth said. “You will have a choice on June 12th to send an honest man to Congress. This is a battle for the honest leadership of America. I say it’s time to clean house.”
Shuttleworth told ARLnow.com that he will be talking to his attorneys this afternoon about whether to move forward with his lawsuit.
Good for Shuttleworth for fighting back against the Moranic Democrat establishment. They must be shaking in their boots at the prospect of Shuttleworth moving forward with the lawsuit, as explained below.
Submitting 1,900 signatures and coming up 18 short? The Democrats probably didn’t want to let Bruce Shuttleworth take discovery – a pre-trial legal process in which Shuttleworth would have been able to collect evidence from the opposition, i.e. the Democratic Party – in the lawsuit; who knows what we would have found out. Were Jim Moran and his brother Brian, the chairman of the Democratic Party of Virginia, trying to fix the primary? What are they hiding that caused them to capitulate in the face of a lawsuit?
(1) If the Democrats counted correctly, they cannot by law certify Shuttleworth as a candidate. (They can’t just say they did it to avoid the suit — if Shuttleworth did not get 1,000 valid signatures, as they claimed originally, they cannot by law certify him.)
(2) If they counted incorrectly, and Shuttleworth got more than 1,000 signatures, how many signatures did they reverse and say were valid after all? And what were the grounds for originally tossing them out? And how did they determine the originally-rejected signatures were valid after all?
(3) Why did they wait until a lawsuit was filed before reversing course? What exactly prompted them to reverse course?
(4) Were there any communications between the Moran campaign and the 8th District Democratic Committee, or the DPV and the 8CD Committee, prior to initially denying Shuttleworth and afterward?
According to AlexandriaNews.org, “the 8th District Democratic Committee discovered a number of signatures on petitions, which had not been previously certified although they were submitted on time and meet the criteria of a qualifying signature. Based on this new information, the Committee concluded that Shuttleworth has the required 1,000 signatures to be on the June 12th ballot as a Democratic candidate for Congress.”
They magically “discovered” previously unseen signatures? It’s obvious they didn’t want Shuttleworth to use discovery in the lawsuit.
Who knows what kind of emails are out there among the Moran and his friends Democrat establishment.