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Stop the presses! Vail Daily falsely claims to ‘break’ Gordon story


Stop the presses! Vail Daily falsely claims to ‘break’ Gordon story

Clerk and recorder calls out for Gordon error
By David O. Williams

June 2, 2008 —  In a “Breaking News” story posted on its website at 10:51 a.m. today, the Vail Daily inaccurately claims ownership of a story that Vail Town Councilman Mark Gordon missed petitioning his way onto the Democratic primary ballot by eight signatures.

Uh, check my previous blog entry, filed Friday evening. Breaking means you broke it. But truly broke the story nearly 64 hours earlier, and posted an item on it earlier Monday morning. So the Daily was picking up nearly three-day-old leftovers.

I don’t mean to crow too much because it’s fairly rare when actually breaks some real news in the Vail Valley (it’s actually really not our main focus). The Daily has a fairly hefty staff for a free resort paper,and some good reporters who actually do break quite a bit of local and some state news.

But when we do break one, we want credit. As for the anonymous, “the online home for the conservative voice in Eagle County,” he, she, it was following, and did so inaccurately.

The anonymous voice of conservatism in the county said in a post that was still on the site as of 12:30 p.m., Monday, that Gordon “waited till ‘the last minute’ to turn in his signature petition. By the time the Clerks (sic) office had (triple checked) his petition, (in less than 24 hours) Mark Gordon had no time left to get the (~8) additional signatures to force the primary.”

Eagle County Clerk and Recorder Teak Simonton, a Republican, tells me that state law only allows for a “cure process” of petitions that come up short in the case of unaffiliated candidates trying to get on the general election ballot or referendums. The state Republican and Democratic parties are trying to dissuade people from petitioning onto the primary ballots.

Simonton said she emailed former Avon Town Councilman Pete Buckley, who is widely believed by several credible elected officials, including a few Republicans, to be behind

“I did send an email to him saying this wasn’t accurate; this doesn’t make me look good; it makes me look like I’ve given the wrong information,” Simonton said. “Mark Gordon was justifiably upset. And {Buckley’s) response was, ‘I’ll forward it to whoever wrote the story.’ He didn’t say that it was him, and he didn’t tell me who he was forwarding it to.

“That’s upsetting, especially when there’s misinformation and you’re not able to talk to the person who wrote it.”

Indeed. If Buckley is behind the anonymous blog, he should put his name on it, especially since his wife and former Avon Town Councilwoman Debbie Buckley is the Republican candidate running against Democrat Jon Stavney for the District 2 Eagle County commissioner seat in November.



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