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Dirty Tricks

Letter to the Editor - Dirty Politics Has No Place in Upper Arlington

During the 2017 City Council election, postcards with gutter level attacks on several candidates were sent to nearly everyone in UA. The funders of the PAC that sent them were unknown until after the election, but the treasurer of record was Angela Lanctot who is currently running for Council. We are publishing the following in the hope that last minute sleazy attacks on candidates will not reappear this year.

Here We Go ... Again!

During the 2016 Presidential Campaign literally hundreds of UA for Hillary and Clinton/Kaine signs were stolen and/or destroyed. UAPA replaced the sign at one home five times.

Funders of "Attack" Postcards in UA City Council Election Revealed


Sign Theft Watch

As many of you know from personal experience, there have been many Hillary Clinton signs stolen from people's yards this election season. At last someone witnessed one of these thefts, which has been reported to the UAPD.

Coming Soon to a Lawn Near You!










What are you going to do about it?!?

Get out your hammers and stake out your piece of political discourse with our signature UA for Obama yard signs from Upper Arlington Progressive Action!

Our wonderful “Sign People” may face challenges but they never give up. Sticky fingered political operatives of the conservative right may try to stop our public display of affection but we always prevail in supporting our President!

Rachel Maddow Show Nov 2011: Anti-gay marriage group fakes support using doctored photos from UAPA's web site

An anti-gay marriage group in New Hampshire, the National Organization for Marriage, doctored up a photo from a 2008 Obama rally that appeared on UAPA's web site. Fortunately, it wasn't long before the group 'Good As You' exposed this attempt to make it look like thousands of people are attending NOM's anti-marriage events.

Signs Are Going Up Everywhere

We've been planting free candidate yard signs all over UA --- at over 125 locations so far. To the right is the map for just the signs that UAPA has placed over the last two weeks.

Now we need your help to cover this map completely with push pins.

There are two ways to get candidate yard signs:

The elephant in Democratic clothing

DINO (Democrat In Name Only): Life-long GOP supporter and UA City Council candidate Vern Morrison told a local 9/12 group that he switched parties in 2008 to vote for Hillary Clinton, while at the same time telling progressive and moderate voters he's a "Democrat".

Columbus Dispatch 2008: Obama signs are hot property




Obama signs are hot property

Supporters seethe as front yards from Clintonville to UA turn up empty

Saturday, September 20, 2008 3:12 AM


Maybe Vaseline laced with hot-pepper juice?
That's the concoction Becky Armstrong of Upper Arlington is thinking of spreading on her Barack Obama campaign sign now that thieves have stolen five others from her yard.

Sometime after dark on Thursday, her sign and 13 others disappeared from Mountview Road. It's the second time such signs have been swiped en masse from the street.

Laura Schwartz, who distributes signs for Democratic Upper Arlington Progressive Action, said that more than 100 Obama-for-president signs have been stolen in the city. She's encouraging people to take their signs in at night and report stolen signs on the group's Web site.

"There was a rash of it last week, and it looks like a coordinated effort," she said.

The same problem cropped up in Upper Arlington four years ago, when John Kerry and George W. Bush signs disappeared close to the election. That same year, a Columbus lawyer admitted he'd told his 13-year-old daughter to take a Kerry sign from a Northwest Side yard.

Upper Arlington residents began reporting stolen Obama signs in late August, said Jackie Ackison of the police records division. No one has reported a stolen John McCain sign, she said.

Police in the suburb discourage residents from reporting the thefts.

"People get very upset that we don't make the stolen signs top priority, but we just can't," Ackison said. She said residents should put their name and address on signs so they can be returned if recovered. So far, none have been, she said.

Neither the Obama nor McCain campaign headquarters in Columbus would comment on yard-sign thefts.

Yard signs are stolen every year in Worthington, said police dispatcher Deb Hunter.

"It'll get hot and heavy soon. We go through this anytime there's an election," she said. Usually, signs from both presidential parties are targets, she said.

In Granville, only one sign -- for McCain -- has been reported stolen so far, police there said.

On Piedmont Road in Clintonville, the pilfering started about two weeks ago, when a handful of signs disappeared. One resident saw a man jump out of a black car, pull up Obama signs and drive off with them at 1:30 a.m.

"She yelled at him: 'I see you! I see you!' but I'm sure he couldn't hear her because his car was playing really loud music," said resident Mary Struble, whose sign was stolen that night. In addition, Struble's Obama bumper sticker was removed from her car.

She said no one has a clue who's stealing the signs but she doesn't think it's a teenage prank.

"If it wasn't political, you'd think someone would have found the signs somewhere," she said.

Bob Krasen of Blenheim Road in Clintonville has had three Obama signs filched. He added a cow bell to the third one as an alarm, but both the sign and the bell were taken. Now he has made a permanent sign and planted it in his yard.

This is the first time that Struble, who's 80, has had a political sign of any kind in her yard or on her car. She also has an Obama T-shirt, which she wears frequently.

So far, no one has tried to steal that.



Columbus Dispatch 2004: Lawyer in hot water over removal of Kerry sign


[Scanned print image]

After having two other John Kerry signs stolen from her yard - the first thanks to lawyer Mitchell H. Banchefsky - Ann Boucher of Columbus made her own.

Mitchell H. Banchefsky doesn't seem like someone who would lead a young person astray.

Besides being a partner in the Downtown law firm of Schottenstein Zox & Dunn, Banchefsky, 51, is a part-time law director for New Albany and Marble Cliff, and a member of the Ohio Crime Victims Compensation Fund board.

But then, it is an election year.

Yesterday, Banchefsky acknowledged to The Dispatch that he told his 13-year-old daughter last month to filch a John Kerry campaign sign from the yard of Ann Boucher, of Clearview Avenue, on the Northwest Side.

Two people witnessed the theft and gave Boucher the license plate number of the suspect's vehicle, which Columbus police traced to Banchefsky.

He said he was driving with his daughter when he spotted the Kerry sign at the corner of Clearview and W North Broadway. He stopped and asked her to grab it, which she did, Banchefsky said.

He was more irritated that the sign was too close to W North Broadway - in the public right of way - Banchefsky said, than he was that it supported the Democratic presidential candidate. A registered. Republican, he is an avid supporter of President Bush.

"Most people don't realize you can't put signs in the right of way," Banchefsky said.

"I'm not using that as an excuse. It was an exercise in bad judgment on my part. I should have called the Columbus code-enforcement people and had them remove it."

Boucher, who spoke twice with Banchefsky after the incident, was skeptical of his right-of-way argument. The sign was at least 12-feet from North Broadway, she said, and well within her property.

"And even if it was in the right of way, what right does he have to take it down?" she said. "It sounds like vigilantism. This is about my First Amendment right of freedom of speech.

"This was a Bush-Kerry thing, not a right-of-way thing."

Banchefsky said he is sensitive to the right-of-way issue because a Bush sign had been removed from his yard, possibly because of right-of-way concerns.

Banchefsky, who sent Boucher a $10 check for the sign, said, "This is being blown out of proportion. I did it on impulse."
Columbus City Prosecutor Steve McIntosh said he would not pursue the case unless Boucher files a complaint.

Boucher said she will not do that because she also would have to file a complaint against Banchefsky's daughter.

Instead, she plans to file an administrative complaint against Banchefsky with the Ohio Supreme Court's disciplinary councel, which investigates allegations against lawyers.

Since the July 17 incident, a second Kerry sign has been stolen from Boucher's yard.

The determined Kerry supporter has installed a third sign that she made herself. "I'll keep replacing them," she said.

The whole situation is unfortunate, said the mayor of Dublin, where Banchefsky handled zoning and development issues until about a year ago.

"The political process is to allow everyone to run for office and to allow them to tell people about that," Mayor Marilee Chinnici-Zuercher said.

Banchefsky showed bad judgement, but his part-time job is secure in New Albany, Mayor Nancy Ferguson said last night.

Ferguson, an attorney, couldn't say if Banchefsky had taken the law into his own hands by having his daughter remove the sign. "I would have to think about that," she said.

There are better way to get young people involved in politics, New Albany Council Member Colleen Briscoe said.

"I would not pull out yard signs, and I wouldn't be having my daughter do it," Briscoe said. "What was he thinking?"


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