Marines contradict Ward on letter regarding misuse of his uniform in campaign ad

The Marine Corps says 1st District GOP congressional candidate Vaughn Ward is permitted to release the full text of a letter from his commander regarding his misuse of the Marine uniform in campaign advertising.

But despite vowing to release the letter if his commander gave permission, Ward has yet to do so.

A statement from Marine Headquarters on Friday contradicts what Ward told a statewide TV audience during a debate Tuesday — that his command ordered him not to release the entire letter.

“The Marine Corps has not ordered Vaughn Ward to not release the full document,” said Maj. Carl Redding in an e-mail. “Ultimately, it is his decision to make.”

Redding is head of media operations at Marine Corps Headquarters. He said he was speaking on behalf of Brig. Gen. Richard Simcock, Ward’s commanding officer in the Office of Legislative Affairs in Washington, D.C. Ward is a Marine reservist.

The Ward campaign did not reply to repeated requests Friday for a full copy of the letter or comment on Redding’s statement. Ward said during Tuesday’s debate, “I’ll release it,” if authorized by Simcock.

A copy of the one-page letter was released to the Statesman April 27 after a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. Seven lines were blacked out to protect Ward’s privacy. On April 30, the chief of the FOIA section at Marine Headquarters, Teresa Ross, wrote the Statesman in an e-mail that Ward could release the entire letter: “The subject letter was addressed to Major Ward. If he wishes to release it to the public, he has all rights to do so.”

Ward was read Ross’s statement during Tuesday’s debate, but again declined to release the whole letter. Ward said the following:

“My answer to that is FOIA doesn't speak for my chain of command. My chain of command is Brig. Gen. Simcock. And in my chain of command I asked them that very question. They said no. FOIA doesn't drive what my commanding officer does. You want to take this up to my commanding officer, he says yes, I'll release it. But right now it's still my chain of command's. And Brig. Gen. Simcock said no. And that was what I was told, and so that's what I do. But, again, FOIA doesn't have anything to do with what Brig. Gen. Simcock does or doesn't do.”

Redding said Simcock had authorized Ward to release the full letter. “Brig. Gen. Simcock is a part of HQMC so I am speaking on his behalf,” Redding wrote, using the acronym for Headquarters Marine Corps.

In the April 7 letter, Simcock told Ward that he violated two provisions in the Department of Defense directive covering political activity by members of the military. Ward ran an ad on the Drudge Report which depicted him in camouflage and body armor. The ad, Simcock wrote, lacked the required disclaimer that says the use of his rank, job titles and photographs in uniform do not imply endorsement by the Pentagon or Marines.

Simcock also wrote that the ad violated the provision that an image of a uniformed serviceman must not be the ad’s “primary graphic representation.”

Ward also mailed postcards without a disclaimer. To correct his error, Ward affixed stickers with a disclaimer in 4-point type. His latest version of the postcard was reprinted to include the disclaimer in 6-point type at the bottom of the card.

"The Few, The Proud,"

and then we have the ones that are an embarrassment to one of our finest military services.

Yowza

He really has a low opinion of the intelligence of the ordinary voter in a Republican primary.

Doing your own fighting now Dan

Now that the rest of the Mistakesman staff has taken up the Democratic National Committees opposition research, you can get back in the fray. You are a hero for us all. Nothing in this contradicts what he said. He was probably told not to release it, but that really isn't legal is it. So, now they say go ahead. Either way, who cares? The lines redacted are to protect his identity. Must you have that? Do you not know who he is?

You are such a go getter, Dan. Well, when there is a R after the name. An apologist and excuse maker when the D is there. If I was Mr. Ward I would stop answering all Mistakesman questions. There is a newspaper of record in the Valley, and it doesn't wear its agenda on its arm band.

I support Rep Minnick, but if this keeps up I will vote for Ward in the primary. Just to see how far little dan will go.

Seconded

I agree.

Ward really should have said, "who cares what the letter says"?. Ward just proves his ignorance in his comment as for the FOIA vs. his commander.

This is only an issue because Ward is running under the Republican ticket.

****

Vote against the Statesman just to make A Statement.

Whoops

I spoke too soon. Maybe Ward is justified in having a low opinion of the intelligence of the ordinary voter in a Republican primary.

Typical Defense

Why are defenders of Ward only attacking the Statesman instead of defending Ward? Bottom line is that Ward has run a messed up campaign. Even defenders of Ward have to admit to that.

Impressions

Not a defender of Ward.
Self and others on here have made a point of that.

Not a supportor of Ward but tired of the Statesman agenda.

So don't click on the linky thingy...

Save the Rolaids for something else.

And pass the Cheetos!

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Agenda?

If the Statesman did not report on this, would that be an agenda?

No, a COVER-UP...gee Wally, I thought you'd know!

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Hey "Statesman", what office are you running for???

Will you be on the ballot in Ada County?
Who's your opponent?
Ignorance? Figures.

Vote against the "Statesman" Vote for Ignorance.

Endorsements

It's easy to see Statesman's endorsements.
And Richert loves to keep score.

The office on Curtis is fine and they aren't after a new one. .

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Prove Sysiphus Wrong!

Sysiphus gave Ward supporters the benefit of the doubt. You successfully proved him wrong. Congratulations.

Blame the Statesman, the USMC, Apple Corp., O’Barto, the internet, Obama and the falling Euro. Prove that single digit intelligence retains 1st amendment rights to advertise stupid. Too funny.

SysIphus may be wrong but ask SisYphus

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You've got to be kidding me?

You've got to be kidding me? A reporter reports the "brilliant" things Mr. Ward has done and your willing to switch your vote in spite of a reporter? Haha. Way to look out for the best interests of our state. Dem or Rep, Idaho cannot afford to have this guy as one of our elected officials. Take a deep breathe and think......Please, for Idaho.

I don't have to change anything!

But my famuly in Nampa has to figure it out.

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Pokey

I can't stand Dan Popkey, he's such a tool. I support Minnick as well but think I'll vote for Ward in the primary to.

That will show him!

Yeah lets all vote against the Statesman in the primary. That will show them!

Whether or not you agree with articles Dan Popkey writes or that the Statesman publishes, this has got to be the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard.

Dizzy Ward?

Man, you'd think Ward would get dizzy since his load is always on the spin cycle.

latest blunder

Vaughn you may need to review the Uniform Code of Military Justice, specifically Article 133.

Baaad idea

Ok, I just read where a couple of you people are going to stick it to the Statesman and vote for Ward because of the articles they wrote about him? LMFAO! No independent thought involved at all eh? no litmus test or vetting the candidate? Just the knuckledragger attitude of "if that liburl ragmag is again' em', I'm a votin' for em'" Scr@w you Dan... As you shake your pudgy little fist at the sky.
How weak minded of you. If the articles are untrue, then rebut them, get off your duff and call it out, or go cry elsewhere your slobbery crocodile tears are getting all over the place and you were going to vote for poser boy anyway. Sheesh!

"Truthiness"

It seems quite a few writers on here are upset about the Statesman reporting factually based stories which is exactly the type of voter the Vaughn campaign is looking for support from. Might want to go watch some "Fair and balanced". Time for the carpetbagging phony to go back home to Virginia.

What a bunch of tools!!

Clearly, the comments that are here to shift the blame to Dan Popkey and the Statesman and away from Vaughn Ward and his unraveling campaing were written by Ward's campaign.

It's the classic, watch what I do with my left hand, while my right hand does something devious----slight of hand, parlor tricks. Every day something new about Ward and his slipshod campaign. Let's see today we learned that Ward is a plagiarist, was too busy to vote, and too stupid to send in his absentee ballot. Yeah, you'd be the best candidate to represent Idaho Vaughn, too bad I'm not that stupid!!

hiding behind the General

Well, know your CG has authorized disclosure MAJ Ward, time to "honorably" live up to your word and disclose the non-redacted letter.

What an embarrassment to the Corps

Either Ward is lying, he didn't understand the General's order or the General is lying. I don't believe the third. If the second is so, then it's Ward's responsibility to make sure that he understood the orders given him. And if it's the first, what sorry excuse for an officer does that make Ward?

He's a Major in the Marines, for crying out loud! This is boot camp stuff here. If he wants to trumpet his service to his potential constituents, for heaven's sake, back it up with some integrity!

I'm with Popkey

This guy needs to just go away.

I'm beginning to understand what President Obama meant when.....

he said, "too much information is a distraction." I do think Popkey needs professional help in working through this fetish he has for weird politicians. Good luck Danno!

You try scrolling around in a sea of postings to find just ONE!

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when is someone going to ask

when is someone going to ask "How many mistakes, miss-steps or campaign staffer problems" puts this guys credability at risk for running against Mr. Minnick?

When I do the count of screw-ups, I get:

Ward: MANY
Labrador: Zero
Brown: Zero

Just those stats alone should make you ask if this guy can manage his people, he says he can lead them, but the score shows problems somewhere!

(I mean, when your screw up score is higher than Harley Brown's there's something that smells wrong here)

So then, will 'collateral damage' spoil it for all R's running?

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