Idaho or Kansas? The saga of John Gotts

According to his social media profiles, or at least some of them, John Gotts is an Atchison, Kan., resident running for a seat in the state's House of Representatives.

But that residency is being called into question. A recent Topeka Capital-Journal article suggests that Gotts hasn't really moved to Kansas and still is living in Idaho.

From the Capital-Journal's Andy Marko:

"On the quiet block in Atchison where John Gotts registered his residence as a candidate for the Kansas House of Representatives, there are no political yard signs — and no signs of Gotts.

"Gotts told The Topeka Capital-Journal last week that Gov. Sam Brownback inspired him to move from Idaho to Atchison to run for state office. But Gotts' landlord in Atchison, James Madden, said he doesn't believe Gotts is actually living on the property at 308 Laramie Street.

"'That's exactly true,' Madden said Saturday. 'The utilities are not turned on.'"

Gotts told the Capital-Journal that he is in arrears on his rent, but said he hasn't turned on the utilities because he returned to Idaho to wrap up business.

Gotts, the head of a social media startup called Chumly, is a former Boise resident.

I've been a Facebook "friend" of Gotts' for some time. I know firsthand that Gotts had talked openly on social media about running for the Idaho Legislature as a Republican. And on one LinkedIn page, cited by the the Huffington Post, Gotts describes himself as a candidate for the Idaho state Senate. Gotts did not file to run in the 2012 Idaho elections.

On his Facebook page, Gotts identifies himself as an Atchison, Kan., resident. He lists himself as married; on her Facebook page, Bethany Gotts says she is a resident of Hailey.

I don't much to add to this yarn by way of commentary — although it is another illustration of why reporters use social media to find out more about candidates, and sometimes find gaps in their stories. As a social media professional, Gotts of all people shouldn't be surprised by that.

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