Today, the Scott Peters campaign is calling on Denise Gitsham to take down and retract false social media posts that make fraudulent character attacks about Peters’ deceased father-in-law. These low tactics date back to August, and follow a clear and troubling pattern of Gitsham making erroneous attacks that any Google search can verify as false.
“We’ve ignored fraudulent posts and statements from Denise for awhile because, frankly very few people are paying much attention to them, but a false attack involving Scott’s wife’s deceased father is beyond the pale,” said Peters’ campaign manager, MaryAnne Pintar.
“This is particularly outrageous coming from Gitsham, a former Washington lobbyist, who has already been fined by the House Ethics Committee for her lack of transparency and failure to follow ethics rules,” Pintar continued. “Denise Gitsham says that she is running for office to change politics as usual, these false attacks suggest otherwise."
Gitsham has had to correct every single legally required quarterly disclosure statement she’s filed for failure to follow the law. She has also been fined by the House Ethics Committee for failing to follow the rules for personal financial disclosure. Months after being alerted to these failures, Gitsham refused to correct them. The San Diego Union Tribune reported that “the delay left voters without the chance to fully vet Gitsham’s financial status and potential conflicts of interests as they could her opponents.”
This post, from 9:29 am this morning, whiffs entirely.
Screenshot from Gitsham Facebook.
The most disturbing of Ms. Gitsham’s falsehoods are in regard to Congressman Peters’ deceased father-in-law, Vincent Gorguze. Gorguze was NEVER listed as a contributor to Peters’ campaign following his death; that is an outright lie. After Gorguze passed away, he was incorrectly listed as a donor to two other campaigns instead of his widow. Peters and his family were not responsible for these errors, and the other campaigns have since corrected them. An investigative reporter from the San Diego Union Tribune wrote about the donations, calling them “an unfortunate oddity.” She was right, Gitsham is wrong -- again.
Another post, from August 19th, is also false. First, the Gitsham Campaign altered the headline from the San Diego Union Tribune, completely misrepresenting the article and the reporting done by the journalist.
Second, Gitsham claimed that Peters accepted illegal contributions; this is untrue. The contributions Gitsham refers to were from Babul Bera, who donated to Peters and was later convicted on campaign finance charges. However, the charges against Bera were unrelated to contributions made to Peters. Peters did not accept illegal contributions, and no reports or news articles, including the one misrepresented in the post, claimed that he did.