Former Philadelphia Eagle Jon Runyan's bid for US Congress in South Jersey's 3rd District took a turn in the big guy's favor this past week when the Courier Post reported that his opponent John Adler and his camp allegedly planted a fraudulent Tea Party candidate to siphon off votes from the left tackle - an accusation Runyan's campaign had been making ever since the 3rd party candidate's name first surfaced when results from the incumbent's internal poll were first released.
From CP's Jane Roh:
Sources said Adler’s congressional and campaign staff carried out the plan with the help of CCDC staffers and volunteers.
“The goal was to take 5 percent of (Republican Jon) Runyan’s vote,” said one South Jersey Democrat. “Steve Asycue designed the plan with Geoff Mackler following his lead.”
Ayscue, 40, is a high-profile Democratic consultant who runs CCDC operations. Mackler, 34, is Adler’s campaign manager. The Washington, D.C., resident worked for DCCC prior to coming to South Jersey earlier this year.
“From the beginning orders have flowed from Cherry Hill,” said one Democratic operative, referring to CCDC headquarters at Garden State Pavilions shopping center.
Ed boards and news orgs are jumping all over it, including the influential Asbury Park Press:
Installing a “plant” candidate in an election is not illegal. But it is underhanded and deceptive, to say the least. It calls into question the judgment and principles of the candidate whose campaign orchestrated the plant.
Here's the latest from MyFoxPhilly.com: