OMAHA, Neb. — The Douglas County Democratic Party has omitted the name of one of its legislative candidates from one of its promotional pamphlets because it says the candidate defied the party by waging a negative campaign against a fellow Democrat.
John Synowiecki said campaign materials that the party took issue with were meant to contrast his views with those of Tony Vargas, a fellow Democrat who he’s running against for the District 7 seat in the officially nonpartisan Legislature, according to the Omaha World-Herald (http://bit.ly/2eaG906 ).
“We did provide some comparative pieces that were not in any way, shape or form negative,” Synowiecki said.
The two advanced to run in the Nov. 8 election by finishing ahead of a Republican in the primary.
County party officials had warned candidates not to engage in negative campaigning against fellow Democrats seeking seats in the Legislature. County party chairwoman Crystal Rhoades said Sunday that Synowiecki disregarded the warning and in printed campaign materials and misrepresented Vargas’ positions on taxes and charter schools.
“I want them to talk about why they are qualified for the job and not tear each other down,” Rhoades said.
Synowiecki said the materials his campaign distributed were intended to contrast his views with Vargas’ views.
Vargas said he’s focusing on the campaign, not the disputed materials.
“This issue that my opponent John is having with the Democratic Party is between them,” Vargas said.
Vince Powers, who heads the state Democratic Party, said the state organization is making sure people in the downtown and south Omaha district get new lists that contain both candidates’ names. The state party had nothing to do with the county-level decision, he said.
“One person’s negative ad is another person’s fact-based comparison,” Powers said.
Information from: Omaha World-Herald, http://www.omaha.com