CA-Gov: Whitman Defends Handling of Vote Story
Former eBay CEO Meg Whitman (R) said she would not have changed anything in the way she and her campaign responded to a Sacramento Bee article alleging that she had never been registered to vote before 2002.
"I was clear as early as February that my voting record was not perfect," Whitman said in an interview with the Fix today in Washington. "The Bee story did not square with my research and my recollection."
Whitman added that once the story broke, she tasked her team with crafting a "deliberate" and "thoughtful" response to the burgeoning controversy -- waiting nearly two weeks before sending a letter to the Bee earlier this week demanding that the paper "correct the record as soon as possible."
Of the Bee, Whitman said today: "I think it wasn't good the way Sacramento Bee conducted themselves." (The paper has written subsequent stories noting that Whitman was, in fact, registered to vote in San Francisco in 1982 and in Santa Clara County in 1999.)
Whether and how often Whitman voted before she decided to seek the California governorship this year became a major issue in the contest over the past fortnight with state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner, one of Whitman's rivals for the Republican nod, seeking to cast her voting record as disqualifying.
Whitman said her voting history comes up one out of every four events she does and "if people ask about I am happy to talk about it."
Voters seem unaffected -- so far -- by the controversy. A new Field poll showed Whitman leading the Republican field with 22 percent followed by former Rep. Tom Campbell at 20 percent and Poizner at nine percent.
We'll have more from our Whitman interview in the days to come...
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