Racquel Chiarella of Monroe considered herself a faithful Republican, so when she was asked to write a letter to the editors of several newspapers in support of state Senate candidate Bill Baroni, she was more than happy to oblige.
But when Baroni's staffers sent her a form letter to sign that was critical of Democratic Senate candidate Seema Singh, Chiarella not only refused, but resigned her leadership position with the Monroe GOP committee.
"Bill Baroni is about running clean campaigns and I felt that this letter was unethical and so negative that I wouldn't sign it," Chiarella said. "If it had just been a letter supporting (Baroni), I would have signed it without a problem, but because it was attacking his opponent and I don't even know if the issues it raised are legitimate, I could not put my name on it."
Chiarella said she was originally contacted by Baroni staffer Arnaz Ali, who said the campaign was looking for a Monroe resident to sign a letter in favor of the Republican. The instructions accompanying the letter asked Chiarella to send a copy to four newspapers.
Form letters-to-the-editor are pretty common in campaigns, but who would write one so unethical that even the party faithful wouldn't sign it? Well, of course, it was all done by an overzealous young staffer (according to Baroni spokeswoman Stacy Schuste). Isn't it always some young staffer?