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Truth or Consequences.

March 6, 2011

Below you will find messages I received this weekend. One from a former mayor and commissioner who served our city for 12 years, another from a former member of the Historic Preservation Commission and a current leader of the friends of Mead Gardens, and then one from a group of citizens.

Please vote on Tuesday. Please encourage your family, friends, and neighbors to vote on Tuesday.

In recent years our local elections have provided an outlet for the most strident and churlish among us to willfully engage in lies, distortions, hypocrisy, and character assassination, I presume on the premise that they are so “right” that civil engagement and actual debate are irrelevant to the process. Unfortunately, some of the candidates elected in part on the basis of this grossly negative campaigning have been either silent about, tolerant of, or complicit in this practice.

This year we have been the beneficiaries of Herb Weiss’s false information about Fleet Peeples Park paid for by anonymous parties intentionally trying to incite outrage among the citizenry.

And now we have a last minute mailer from someone named Will Graves who does not even live in Winter Park, making stuff up about Sarah Sprinkel in a bald negative attack. How quaint and disturbing and irresponsible.


Regards, Pete Weldon

March 5, 2011

I am writing to you as a very concerned citizen and former mayor of Winter Park. I am fed up with the gutter politics that we have been subjected to in recent years. We reached the low point with the piece of mail that I received yesterday against Sarah Sprinkel. This piece of trash was sent out by someone who doesn’t even live in the City of Winter Park but in unincorporated Orange County and the individual listed as sending it out isn’t even listed on the tax rolls of Orange County. I would question who funded this mail out and why.

Your vote on March 8 is very important if you want to bring back civility and pride in your local government.

I would encourage you to vote for Sarah Sprinkel and Steve Leary. Both of these individuals are determined to bring back civility and provide good quality government to Winter Park, something that we can be proud of. Their opponents are strongly supported by the outgoing city commissioner who the Orlando Sentinel called “the commission’s most divisive member”. She is not seeking re-election. We need a government that listens to the residents and uses their input to make decisions.

I proudly served as your elected commissioner and mayor for 12 years; there were differences of opinion between commissioners with whom I served but we shared our thoughts and ideas and never let our differences get to the point where we couldn’t be friends. We need to restore that to our city commission; I am confident that the election of Sarah Sprinkel and Steve Leary will do that and make us proud of our local government. I urge you to vote for these two individuals on Tuesday and encourage as many people as you can to do so as well.

I would also urge you to vote against the charter amendment. The present system has worked very well for many years and is not broken. Last year, the city commission appointed a Charter Study Commission to review and make recommendations of changes to the City Charter. This item was considered by the Study Commission and rejected and later, this item was placed on the ballot by the City Commission on a motion by Commissioner Dillaha.

Thank you.
Dave Johnston
Former Mayor

March 4, 2011

In today’s mail, we received a mailer, authored by Will Graves, shamelessly seeking to discredit Sarah Sprinkel’s candidacy. As in past communications on other topics (i.e. commuter rail, Central Park), Mr. Graves uses innuendo, falsehoods, and opinions masquerading as facts as a basis for his opposition. This mailer is a continuation of the politics of divisiveness that has characterized Winter Park politics since David Strong’s mayoral campaign. It is time for this behavior to stop. It is time for the community to come together to address its various issues through collaboration and cooperation.

Because of the lack of respect for one another’s opinions that is so prevalent in Winter Park, we still are arguing rather than effectively working towards solutions. We have important issues to tackle such as broadening our tax base, a growing pension exposure, protecting our green space, and agreeing to the best ways to grow our economy while preserving our lifestyle. We are better than this: this mailer and what it represents is wrong and it must come to a stop. Don’t be taken in by Will Grave’s misstatements and scare tactics. He is nothing more than an outside trouble maker and it is time for us to show him that his style of politics is a thing of the past in Winter Park.

I applaud Sarah’s integrity, honesty, style and most of all her unwavering commitment to bring cooperation, civility and common sense to the City Commission. It is time for constructive change in the political discourse in Winter Park and I ask you to vote for Sarah Sprinkel on March 8 to help to make that change happen.

One more thing, if you are already voting for Sarah, please pass this along to your friends. The politics of divisiveness still runs deep in Winter Park, so every vote will count. Thank you.

Jeffrey Blydenburgh
204 Genius Drive
Winter Park

March 4, 2011

An open letter to Winter Park Voters

Will Graves Has Gone Too Far

Last week in our mail boxes we were shocked to find the kind of uncensored dogma that is undermining the political process in our country. What we thought was a mentality limited to national elections has permeated our local community. Shame on you Will Graves!

Your nasty assault on the character of a respected member of our local community is unwarranted and unwelcome. We can disagree without becoming disagreeable. You have crossed the line. It is this kind inflammatory distortions of the truth, such as the nasty attack on Sarah Sprinkel that give rise to unchecked anger and hatred which is the root of moral decay and loss of civility in our society. It is actions like yours that are eroding our faith in government and the willingness of good people to serve their community.

You not only owe Sarah Sprinkel an apology but you owe an apology to the entire community of Winter Park.  You have not dispensed valuable or worthwhile information to the voters; you have spewed venom, innuendo and obscene hatred.

In these last days before our election, the only way the people of Winter Park can show you, and people like you, that we do not have the patience or tolerance for this kind of dishonest behavior in our political process, is to overwhelmingly vote for Sarah Sprinkel.

Consider this open letter as an invitation to every decent minded citizen in Winter Park to join with me and send a message to the people who sponsored this outrageous indignation.  Please cast your vote on Tuesday March 8 for Sarah Sprinkel


Charles S. Namey    Please add your name and forward this email to your friends and neighbors
Janet Atkins
Dick and Sandy Womble
Steve and Sally Simmons
Joe Brock
Tom Nowicki
Carla Lubet
Kaile Howell
Lori Martin

Posted in Election 2011, Elections, Ethics.

One Response

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  1. Anonymous says

    As always. thanks for getting the facts out to the voters. Great job, Pete!

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