Steve Glaser, who lost the state House District 44 race to replace retiring Democratic Rep. Mike McDonald, has delivered a harsh critique of the lack of support for his efforts from the state Democratic party. Steve Hale has reproduced his email and a response from TNDP.
Excerpt from the email: My opponents party used their considerable clout and gravity to move his candidacy forward and managed to besmirch my reputation in the press with little or no response from us. The TNGOP conducted polling and provided technical support to my opponent and helped raise PAC money from traditional republican strongholds. It appears their strategy was to raise money, present their candidate as a reasonable person, and promote his republicanism to exploit his affiliation with the Romney Campaign.
On the other hand the TNDP provided absolutely no support to our campaign. In fact, we had to pay for access to Votebuilder, and pay for a “poll” that was ostensibly for us but was done for multiple candidates. We had to cajole the party into including our website on the candidate page. We had to request our video be promoted like the other candidates, but it was too late. We received more financial help from the Sumner County Democratic Party than from the TNDP which was zero. It was like pulling teeth to get our calls answered and the answers we got were often times inconsistent or wrong.
Excerpt from the response of TNDP’s Brandon Puttbrese: “The Tennessee Democratic Party did more for candidates this time around than it’s ever done, broadly speaking, more than we’ve ever done for candidates across the board [than] ever before. Now some candidates needed more assistance, some needed less assistance. But we tried to offer a base level of support for every candidate.”
When asked, Puttbrese declined to say whether he rejected Glaser’s critique or if the former candidate’s claims of an absentee party organization were incorrect.
“We did everything we could for all kinds of candidates,” Puttbrese said. “I won’t say that Steve is wrong. I won’t say that he’s right. I would like to have a conversation with him, versus reading it on a blog, and I think that some people have had a conversation with him, not me personally. So, I’m not here to mince hairs with Steve. I think he did the best he could do in a tough district.”
Republican state House candidate Lauri Day suffered collateral damage in an attack sent by her own party against a Democratic candidate in Sumner County, reports the Clarksville Leaf-Chronicle. Tennessee Republican Party Chairman Chris Devaney said in an Oct. 2 news release that Steve Glaser, a Democratic candidate for state House District 44, should drop out of the race because of unpaid taxes. Devaney wrote that Glaser’s tax liens exhibited “a pattern of just refusing to pay his fair share.”
Glaser owes nearly $88,000 to the IRS, and at least 15 liens by federal and state tax collectors have been filed between 1988 and August of this year against him, according to the release.
“What arrogance for him to think he could run for office and actually serve in the Legislature. Instead of campaigning to have Tennesseans pay his salary, he should be working a second job to pay his bills,” Devaney said in the release. “Steve Glaser should do what’s right and suspend his campaign until his taxes are paid in full.”
The Tennessee Democratic Party pointed out Monday morning that Devaney’s attack should also apply to Day.
“There’s just one problem – in his zeal to attack a Democrat, Devaney has effectively said that candidate for state House Lauri Day should resign from her race in order to get a second job,” spokesman Sean Braisted wrote in a news release.
Day, who is running against Democratic Rep. John Tidwell in District 74, has a $46,000 lien against her home for unpaid federal income taxes.
“This is just blatant hypocrisy on the part of the Tennessee Republican Party,” said state Democratic Party Chairman Chip Forrester in the news release. “Either Devaney needs to call on his candidate, Lauri Day, to drop out of her race and get another job, or he needs to come clean and admit that he doesn’t actually mean what he says.”
…Tennessee Republican Party Executive Director Adam Nickas said the cases were different because Glaser had not been up front with voters.
“He came out with desperate and meritless attacks against his Republican opponent while ignoring his excessive amount of unpaid taxes, which is well-documented, even while his campaign touts more government spending just like John Tidwell,” Nickas wrote in an e-mail.
“Lauri Day, on the other hand, has been up-front with the voters and, unlike the Democrats, has been running a campaign based on the important issues facing our state.”
Day said on Monday that she may have mentioned her tax issues on a radio show prior to the Republican primary. The liens first received widespread attention following a Sept. 10 article in The Leaf-Chronicle.
From The Tennessean’s review of the race in House District 44, a seat being vacated by Democratic Rep. Mike McDonald of Portland. Democratic candidate Steve Glaser of Portland and Cottontown Republican William Lamberth say education is on the minds of voters after a much-debated local battle for school funding between the Sumner County Board of Education and the Sumner County Commission in August.
“I don’t think you can spend too much on schools,” said Glaser, an attorney and former Portland city judge. “That’s an investment that comes back around by helping us grow and improve economic development and providing better-paying jobs.”
Glaser said he wants to see the legislature put $333 million of the $563 million that exceeded last year’s in tax revenue estimates toward education. He favors restoring collective bargaining between teachers and school leaders by repealing the Professional Educators Collaborative Conferencing Act of 2011.
Lamberth, a Sumner County assistant district attorney, says the key to growing the economy and improving opportunities is placing more emphasis on career and technical education at the high school level. Local industry officials in Sumner County complain of not having enough qualified workers to fill higher-paying, skilled jobs, he said.
…The relatively tame race between the two attorneys took a turn last week when Glaser claimed Lamberth inappropriately accepted campaign donations in March from the family of Portland resident Kenneth Lame, who, in the 2010 shooting of his wife, was charged with second-degree murder but later pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of criminally negligent homicide.
Lamberth, assigned to prosecute drunk-driving cases and vehicular crimes, responded by saying he had no involvement in the case nor had he had a single conversation about it with anyone connected to the case.
Glaser further claimed Lamberth inappropriately accepted about $6,000 in donations from local attorneys, whose clients end up under his prosecution, but he admitted he didn’t think his opponent or the district attorney’s office did anything wrong.
For his part, Lamberth has stayed away from the topic of Glaser’s past bankruptcies and financial troubles with the Internal Revenue Service, saying he wanted to avoid a campaign of “mudslinging,” though the state Republican Party recently called on Glaser to suspend his campaign until he had paid his taxes.
Sumner County Assistant District Attorney William Lamberth, who is campaigning for the 44th District seat on the State House of Representatives, is fuming over accusations from opponent Steven Glaser that he exchanged a reduced sentence in the Kenneth Lame murder case for campaign contributions, reports the Portland Leader.
“This is the type of made-up, political mud-slinging that turns people off to politics,” Lamberth said Tuesday evening after learning of a press release Glaser sent out to the media. “An open discussion of the issues that can strenghten our communities — like better, high-paying jobs, schools, and keeping taxes low — those are the things that I want to focus on as a candidate and a member of this community.”
Glaser, who refers to himself as a Judge, even though he is no longer the Judge for the City of Portland, has accused Lamberth of accepting $1,500 from a “convicted killer’s father and attorney before sentencing.”
Glaser states in his press release: “In November 2010, Kenneth Lame was arrested on the charge of shooting his wife on June 10, 2010. His trial was set for April 9, 2012 on charges of second degree murder…..On March 10th and 28th in 2012, donations were made to Mr. Lamberth from both Kenneth’s father and attorney. A week later, on April 5, 2012, the District Attorney’s office agreed to lessen Kenneth’s charge to criminal negligence….After nearly two years of preparing the evidence proving Kenneth’s guilt for second degree murder, the District Attorney’s office decided there was not enough to prove he intended to kill his wife. This was less than one week after a donation of $1,000 from Kenneth’s attorney was made to the Assistant District Attorney, William Lamberth. There is an appearance of impropriety that must be addressed.”
…Kenneth Lame was indicted in Nov. 2010 on charges of second degree murder in the death of his wife, Wendy White Lame, in June 2010; however, in a settlement plea, Lame pleaded guilty to negligent homicide and was sentenced to two years with a minimum of seven months to serve. He is currently serving his sentence in Morgan County Correctional Complex in Wartburg, Tenn.
“I think it’s reprehensible that Steve Glaser tried to score political points from a tragedy that destroyed two families,” Lamberth said. “There are nine assistant district attorneys in our office. I have cases that are assigned to me and I was never involved in the Lame case at any point. Furthermore, ADA Ron Blanton, who was assigned to the case, has no knowledge of who gives to my campaign or the day-to-day workings of my campaign. The two are entirely separate.”
— Note: The article doesn’t mention it, but Lamberth is the Republican nominee; Glaser the Democrat.
Democratic candidate Steve Glaser, his wife and law practice owe nearly $88,000 to the Internal Revenue Service in delinquent taxes, penalties and interest, according to The Tennessean. Glaser is seeking the House District 44 seat being vacated by Rep. Mike McDonald, D-Gallatin. Federal and state tax collectors have filed at least 15 liens against Glaser for unpaid personal income, unemployment and business taxes as far back as 1988 and as recently as Aug. 14. The debts total more than $158,000, according to records on file with the Sumner County Register of Deeds.
Glaser, an attorney and former Portland city judge, conceded he owes the IRS back taxes but said he could not recall how much.
“I’m not ashamed of anything,” he said. “I’m doing the best I can to live in the world like everybody else. In life, you’re going to have successes and failures. It’s what you do about it that matters, and I’m paying my taxes.”
Glaser resigned as Portland’s city judge on Aug. 20, stepping down from a position he had held for nine years, to focus on his race against Cottontown Republican William Lamberth, a Sumner County assistant district attorney.
“I’m not a perfect candidate; I’ve had ups and downs just like everyone else. If the voters are looking for the perfect candidate, I’m not him,” Glaser said.
The liens against Glaser range from $82.43 in 2008 to $55,540 for unpaid federal income taxes between 1988 and 1992.
Of the $158,000 in total liens filed, records indicate Glaser has been released from $70,237 in back taxes owed from 1988 through 1994, 2001 and 2002.