Newspaper publishes phony anti-Lois Capps letter
October 23, 2012
The Santa Maria Times, on Saturday, posted a phony letter to the editor slamming Congresswoman Lois Capps’ performance and claiming a Democratic Club had refused to endorse the democratic candidate for the 23rd District.
“As a Democratic Club we should be endorsing all Democratic candidates, but her performance as our representative in Congress has been so extremely bad for so long, we can no longer support her,” the letter to the editor says. “However, we do not endorse her opponent because we are Democrats.”
The letter states it was written by John Castillo of Santa Maria, president of the North Santa Barbara County Democratic Club.
However, there is no registered North Santa Barbara County Democratic Club and the only John Castillo in Santa Maria is a Republican who told the Times he did not write the anti-Capps letter, the Times said.
Following publication of the letter, the editors at the Times discovered no one had contacted the letter writer and today posted a story explaining their mistake.
“The error is particularly bad because this “Democratic Club president” was highly critical of a Democratic candidate, Lois Capps,” the Times’ editorial staff said. “Certainly, that should have raised enough red flags that any number of people here should have said, “Wait a minute. Has someone checked this?” Several people assumed that someone else had, and we all know the old saying about what happens when we assume. Not a good thing.”