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Pr. Geo's council candidate blames volunteers for lifting platform from rival

Jonathan Mummolo

A candidate for Prince George's County Council is blaming overzealous volunteer staffers for lifting the campaign platform of a rival candidate on fliers distributed at a recent meeting.

Juanita D. Miller, a candidate for Council District 9, passed out fliers (see below) during a May 10 homeowner's association meeting with ideas such as, "treat teachers as the professionals that they are by increasing salaries based on student achievement..." and, "work with Maryland General Assembly bring public safety surcharge dollars to impacted communities..."

Rival candidate, Tamara Davis Brown, was in attendance to see the near word-for-word similarity with the platform her campaign says was published on her Web site in December.

Davis Brown, a part-time attorney, confronted Miller at the meeting about the apparent plagiarism, Davis Brown's spokeswoman said, and Miller has since sent an apology note to Davis Brown's campaign (see below).

In an interview Friday, Miller said volunteers were to blame for the mishap.

"The volunteers presented me with the statement, which was in sync with what my vision is for Prince George's County anyway, and I read it for clarity and correctness in terms of grammar, etc., and accepted, and that's it," Miller said. "I had no clue that anything had been pulled from anyone else's literature."

A spokesman for Davis Brown said the incident was "shocking."

"To find out it was basically copied word for word to what we had developed was quite shocking to us," said spokeswoman Jennifer Harris."The fact of the matter remains she was passing out materials she had obviously not properly reviewed."

Miller is a former commissioner with the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission. She was often seen by critics as a source of friction on the WSSC board, and was replaced by County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D) last year.

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[Miller's apology note sent to Brown May 14, provided by Brown campaign]:

Tamara:

Since our telephone discussion on Monday, May 10th, I have had a chance to visit your website and read your Vision Statement. I extend my most humble and deepest apologies. I had absolutely no idea that the zeal of volunteer staffers had led to a "raid" on your campaign material. I assure you that I will do all within my power to see that no such incursion is repeated. On another note, I commend you on your vision statement which, in many ways, parallels my own sense of where I believe this great County can go under effective leadership.

Again, I sincerely apologize.


Juanita Miller

Miller Platform

By Jonathan Mummolo  |  May 14, 2010; 3:48 PM ET
Categories:  2010 Elections , Jonathan Mummolo , Prince George's County  | Tags: Prince George's County Maryland  
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Comments

If this is an example of how Ms. Miller would govern the County, then we need to look elsewhere for leadership. I am suspicious of a candidate who claims not to know what their staff is up to. You should be also.

I support the candidacy of Tamara Davis-Brown specifically because of her leadership skills and her honesty with everyone she deals with; a rare commodity in the political arena.

Posted by: ARRC | May 19, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

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