Quantcast
Connect with us

Campaign worker for Pennsylvania GOP incumbent busted for posing as reporter and trolling opponent with bizarre questions

Published

on

Tracker fake "reporter" Ariel Benjamin Mannes and Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA)

A staffer working for Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick’s (R-PA) campaign faked his identity at a campaign event for his Democratic opponent Scott Wallace.

Ariel Benjamin Mannes attended events claiming to be a writer who “(files) for Bucks County Courier,” but he’s actually a part-time staffer for the Republican’s campaign, according to the paper.

ADVERTISEMENT

He asked several questions to the Democratic candidate that were overtly political, which tipped Democrats off that he wasn’t a real journalist.

In an event last week, the “reporter” posing as “Ben Mendelson” showed up to a Wallace event about food stamps in Buck’s County. Instead, “Mendelson” asked an array of questions that had nothing to do with the topic. A week later, Wallace’s comments from the event wound up in a story for the conservative paper The Washington Examiner and in a press release from the National Republican Congressional Committee.

The Bucks County Courier only learned about the claim last week and reached out with questions for the campaign. The fake reporter submitted a guest opinion piece under another fake name last month. This was before he falsely identified himself as a reporter.

“I file for Bucks County Courier in Philadelphia,” the man can be heard saying on video before trailing off the video.

ADVERTISEMENT

Only after the paper contacted Fitzpatrick’s campaign did the man resign and Fitzpatrick called the behavior “completely unacceptable.” Fitzpatrick then called the paper to apologize.

“I can’t say I’m surprised that Republicans would send somebody to our events and ask them to pose as a reporter so they can record Scott undetected,” Wallace campaign manager Eric Nagy said in an emailed statement. “With the lies and smears they’re spreading about Scott on TV, this is just one more unethical tactic to add to the list.”

There were at least five videos of the campaign uploaded to a channel that has more than 600 videos of Democratic candidates on it that can be dissected by Republican researchers. Mannes or “Mendelson” is no longer with the campaign.

ADVERTISEMENT

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and legal efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. And unlike other news outlets, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from billionaires and corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click to donate by check.

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



Report typos and corrections to: [email protected]. Send news tips to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Trump is ‘a bottomless pit of emotional need’ with a ‘desperate’ desire for friends: NYT’s Charles Blow

Published

on

New York Times editorial writer Charles Blow called out the president in his Sunday editorial for always associating the country with himself.

The byproduct of narcissism is that everything surrounds the narcissist. Such is the case with President Donald Trump's latest series of tweets talking about "My Stock Market" and quoting a fan referring to him as the second coming of Christ.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

‘Disconnected from reality’: NY Times editor ridicules Trump for being a ‘farce’ of a president

Published

on

New York Times editorial board member, Michelle Cottle, released a scathing op-ed highlighting the president's tendency to give oxygen to his adversaries that no one else would be paying attention to otherwise.

In a piece relating the White House to a "three-ring" circus, Cottle called the president a "farce" for his new war with Anthony Scaramucci.

As the president tweeted, no one had heard of Scaramucci until Trump hired him and former chief-of-staff John Kelly fired him after only 11 days.

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

Trump goes off on Twitter rant about ‘My Stock Market’ at nearly 2 a.m. in France

Published

on

President Donald Trump has an early morning meeting Monday with Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi. He also has a full day of meeting with the G-7, but that wasn't his focus in the early morning hours.

"My Stock Market gains must be judged from the day after the Election (sic), November 9, 2016, where the Market went up big after the win, and because of the win. Had my opponent won, CRASH!" Trump tweeted Sunday night in the U.S., which was nearly 2 a.m. in France where the president is staying during the G-7 summit.

My Stock Market gains must be judged from the day after the Election, November 9, 2016, where the Market went up big after the win, and because of the win. Had my opponent won, CRASH!

Continue Reading
 
 

Thank you for whitelisting Raw Story!

As a special thank you, from now until August 31st, we're offering you a discounted rate of $5.99/month to subscribe and get ad-free access. We're honored to have you as a reader. Thank you. :) —Elias, Membership Coordinator
HELP US UNCOVER CORRUPTION!
close-link
close-image