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California 25th Senate Candidate Anthony Portantino Fabricated Endorsements On His Campaign Website

NOT ENDORSING: HMG-CN exclusively obtained documentation showing these officials did not endorse Portantino (far left) despite  being listed as supporters on  his website. Those not endorsing are (l-r) state Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), Glendale Councilwoman Laura Friedman, Pasadena Councilman Terry Tornek, and Eric Bauman, Chair of the L.A. Democratic Party.

NOT ENDORSING: HMG-CN exclusively obtained documentation showing these officials did not endorse Portantino (far left) despite being listed as supporters on his website. Those not endorsing are (l-r) state Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), Glendale Councilwoman Laura Friedman, Pasadena Councilman Terry Tornek, and Eric Bauman, Chair of the L.A. Democratic Party.

 

Thursday January 15, 1:13 p.m.

Editor’s Note: Within minutes after posting this story online, the Portantino campaign pulled the endorsement page offline.

Screenshots of the entire Endorsement page, as well as a high resolution PDF, are found at the end of this article.

Click here to view Google cached version of endorsement page.

 

By Brian Hews

A Hews Media Group-Community News investigation has revealed that a website created and paid for by California 25th Senatorial District candidate and former 44th assemblyman Anthony Portantino, contains false endorsements and false statements from several high ranking California politicians, city council members, unions and other organizations.

The investigation revealed that after Portantino termed out of the California Assembly in 2012, he commissioned a “webmaster” to build the site and began uploading the false endorsements, subsequently sending supporters to the site to create a “snowball” effect.

A  “WHOIS” search shows that the web address, va4ndor.com, is registered under an Elliot Cuite of Duarte.

After a few phone calls placed by HMG-CN to officials listed on the website, it became apparent that the falsified list of endorsements and statements was staggering even to the most seasoned political veteran.

A Google search using the term “Anthony Portantino Endorsements” sends the user to the website va4ndor.com/anthony-wp/endorsements listing over fifty endorsements and statements.

The bottom of the website indicates that it is, “Paid for and authorized by Anthony Portantino for Senate 2016, ID# 1334175.”

One of the first endorsements is by Sen. Darrell Steinberg talking about Portantino’s integrity. Steinberg presided over the chamber while three fellow Democrats were suspended. “I have worked with Anthony on foster care issues, stem cell research and good government reform. He has great conviction and integrity and I would be very pleased to welcome him to our Democratic Caucus. He has my complete trust and support.”

Screen Shot 2015-01-15 at 1.05.55 PM

Screenshot from Portantino website

 

 

Scrolling down the endorsement page reveals the “State Senate Leaders” portion of the site.

Prominently listed in that endorsement group is state Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) with a quote about the tragic death of Portantino’s brother Michael, who committed suicide:

“When Anthony’s brother Michael passed away, it left a void in the LGBT community where he was a tireless advocate for civil and human rights. Anthony has picked up his brother’s torch and he embraces our issues with a dignity and passion. His work with HIV and the HIV/AIDS community helps save lives and increases good public health. I would be proud to have him join me in the State Senate.”

Screen Shot 2015-01-15 at 1.06.05 PM

Screenshot from Portantino website.


HGM-CN obtained emails and texts confirming that Sen. Leno did not endorse Portantino.

Even more deplorable, Leno indicated in those communications that he did not give Portantino the statement about his brother Michael, indicating Portantino completely fabricated the statement.

In one of the texts dated Oct. 31, 2014, Sen. Leno said, “Nothing has changed since our last conversation. I have not spoken to Anthony in years.”

Another state Senator rumored as not endorsing Portantino is Sen. Fran Pavley (D-Agoura Hills) listed as Chair of the Senate Policy Committee on Natural Resources and Water.

Pravley is quoted on the website saying, “I first worked with Anthony when he was a member of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy. He has been someone I could always count on to help preserve our hillsides and the environment.”

 

Screen Shot 2015-01-15 at 1.06.11 PM

Screenshot from Portantino website.

 

 

HMG-CN was told that Assemblymember Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood), also listed on the site, was not endorsing Portantino, but calls into Rendon’s office went unreturned.

The investigation also found that two local city council members listed on the site are not endorsing Portantino, Pasadena City Councilman and candidate for Mayor, Terry Tornek, and Glendale City Councilwoman Laura Freidman.

HMG-CN obtained emails indicating Tornek and Friedman were not endorsing Portantino. The Oct. 2014 email from Friedman said, “This is a difficult email for me to write, but due to changed circumstances I will be unable to endorse you for the upcoming State Senate seat.”

When asked if Tornek was not endorsing Portantino, the Oct. 2014 email said, “you are correct.”

HMG-CN also discovered that Eric Bauman, Chair of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party did not endorse Portantino and was “emphatically not supporting him.”

Bauman told HMG-CN, “the only candidate for the 2016 election that I have endorsed is Hillary Clinton. Anybody else who claims to have my endorsement is either confused or just not telling the truth. As a rule, I don’t get ahead of the Party’s endorsement process, and when I do, I put out a public statement and post it on my personal website.”

Sources tell HMG-CN that several organizations including IATSE (International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees) Locals 44 and 871 are not endorsing, yet listed on the website.

In addition, the California Police Chiefs Association, the California Faculty Association, Crime Victims United, are also on the site but not endorsing.

 

Click here to see PDF of endorsement page website 

 

 

Portantino website

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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