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Mailer with George Wallace image backs O.C. supervisor hopeful

The letter to American Independent Party members supports Villa Park Councilwoman Deborah Pauly's campaign. It was written by a man who says he was chairman of Wallace's bid for president in 1967.

May 16, 2012|By Nicole Santa Cruz, Los Angeles Times
  • Villa Park Councilwoman Deborah Pauly is running for a seat on the Orange County Board of Supervisors. A letter written by one of her supporters is the subject of a complaint to the Fair Political Practices Commission.
Villa Park Councilwoman Deborah Pauly is running for a seat on the Orange… (www.villapark.org )

The political mailer that arrived recently in Orange County mailboxes seemed from a different era, embossed with a tiny portrait of former Alabama Gov. George Wallace's face and the campaign slogan "Wallace for President, Stand up for America."

But the letter contained no direct mention of the fiery Southern politician, who gained a national reputation as a segregationist during the civil rights era, mounted four failed presidential campaigns and died in 1998.

Instead, it was a plea to American Independent Party members to elect Villa Park Councilwoman Deborah Pauly to a seat on the Orange County Board of Supervisors.

The letter was written by Bob Walters, a businessman from Orange who identified himself as the chairman of Wallace's bid for president in 1967.

Now it's the subject of a complaint filed by Orange County political watchdog Shirley Grindle, who said the campaign piece violates state law because it doesn't mention who paid for it. Further, Grindle says in her May 13 complaint to the Fair Political Practices Commission, Walters failed to file as a committee with the secretary of state's office.

In the letter, Walters refers to an incident last year when Pauly came under fire for comments she made outside an Islamic charity event in Yorba Linda.

Protesters carried American flags as they booed and chanted at families entering the community center where the event was held to "Go back home."

"I know quite a few Marines who will be very happy to help these terrorists to an early meeting in paradise," she said at the time.

Walters commended Pauly for the protest and said she "recently led a demonstration against two radical Muslims speaking up in Yorba Linda."

He said one of the Muslims was "trying to recruit homegrown terrorists right here in our backyard!"

"We need Deborah Pauly and her brand of hard core limited government, fiscally-conservative positions on the County Board of Supervisors," he wrote.

Walters did not respond to requests for comment.

Pauly also drew ire last year when she wrote on her Facebook page that applauding President Obama's healthcare bill was "like applauding a mugging or a rape. Do you feel sodomized?"

Pauly said that she has not seen the mailer and doesn't know much about Wallace.

She blamed opponent Todd Spitzer, who she said is "working hard to dig up all kinds of noise" leading up to the June 5 election.

Spitzer is a former state assemblyman and Orange County supervisor.

Pauly said she can't do background checks on all potential allies.

"I have a lot of supporters who come out to help me in a variety of ways," she said.

nicole.santacruz@latimes.com

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