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RED FLAGS: Rockledge City Council Candidate under fire for lying about endorsement from Republican Party; Could lose his UPS Stores over campaign finance violations

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In the bustling city of Rockledge, political campaigns are in full swing as candidates vie for a coveted spot on the city council. However, one Republican candidate, Josiah Gattle, has come under scrutiny for questionable campaign tactics that raise concerns about his integrity and fitness for public office.

Gattle has been distributing political advertisements claiming that he has received the endorsement of the Brevard Republican Executive Committee. This assertion is not only misleading but blatantly false. The Brevard Republican Executive Committee has not yet voted to endorse any candidate for the upcoming elections. Such a premature and false claim not only misleads the voters but also undermines the credibility of the endorsing body.

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Furthermore, Gattle’s advertisements also feature the logo of the Brevard Republicans, a move that can be seen as an attempt to further legitimize his false claims. Using official logos without permission is not only ethically questionable but could also have legal implications.

Several elected Brevard Republican Committee members have expressed their anger about the situation. “This kind of dishonest behavior is exactly what we are trying to eliminate from the Republican party.” Gattle has had to be removed from BREC meetings in the past by law enforcement for his outrageous behaviors.

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To understand the gravity of Gattle’s misleading claims, it’s essential to delve into the official procedures for endorsement as outlined in the Republican Party of Florida’s rules:

  1. Endorsement Voting Procedures: The County Executive Committee can endorse, certify, screen, or recommend a Republican candidate in a contested Republican primary or a registered Republican in a nonpartisan election by one of two methods:
  • Upon the affirmative vote of not less than 60% of the County Executive Committee present and voting at a duly called meeting, provided that the number voting to endorse represents a majority of the full committee.
  • Upon the affirmative vote of not less than two-thirds (2/3) of those present and voting at such a meeting, provided that a quorum is present at the time the vote is taken.
  1. Notification: Each announced candidate must be notified that a vote on endorsement is to be taken, and they will be allowed to speak at such a meeting in support of or opposition to any proposed endorsement for an office they are contesting.
  2. Meeting Notice: There must be no less than ten days written notice to each member of the Executive Committee of any meeting at which the vote is to be taken. This notice should inform each member of the time, date, place of the meeting, and that a vote will be taken to endorse, certify, screen, or otherwise recommend one or more Republican candidates for nomination for election.

Given these stringent procedures, it’s evident that Gattle’s claim of endorsement is not only false but also a violation of the party’s established processes. It’s not even possible for him to have been endorsed yet since there has not been a vote on it, as per the rules.

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Such actions by Gattle highlight a concerning lack of integrity. For someone seeking to earn the public’s trust and represent them in an official capacity, honesty and transparency are paramount. Misleading the public, especially in a political campaign, is a significant red flag.

Furthermore, recent revelations indicate that Josiah is in violation of UPS company policies. As an owner of multiple UPS Stores in Brevard County, Josiah has admittedly used the assets of his stores to make in-kind contributions to local political campaigns according to the campaign finance reports of his former employee and disgraced, failed Palm Bay candidate Nathan White, as well as his political action committee “We the People” which is also under investigation by the Florida Elections Commission. Additionally, he has been inviting patrons to come into his UPS store to listen to him campaign during business hours.

According to the UPS policy on political activities and contributions:

  • Personal political activities or contributions must not involve or even appear to involve the use of UPS’s funds and resources.
  • Employee work time is considered a contribution by UPS, and employees cannot pay for time spent campaigning for a political party or candidates.

By providing in-kind contributions from his UPS store and campaigning for his own candidacy inside his store, Josiah is in direct violation of these policies. The consquences of these actions may result in him losing his franchise, and certainly adds another layer of controversy to his already contentious campaign.

The residents of Rockledge deserve representatives who are honest, transparent, and hold themselves to the highest ethical standards. It is essential for voters to be aware of such misleading tactics and consider the implications of electing a candidate who starts their campaign on a foundation of falsehoods.

In conclusion, while political campaigns can be fiercely competitive, there is no room for misleading the public. Josiah Gattle’s actions serve as a reminder of the importance of integrity in public service and the need for voters to be vigilant and informed.

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