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Sarasota GOP Unaware of Allegations against Ex-Party Chair

The Republican Party of Sarasota County has released a statement disavowing any knowledge that former party chairman Bob Waechter allegedly made donations in the name of a rival to a Democratic congressional candidate.

We do not and will not abide any actions that contravene the law in an attempt to advance personal or partisan political goals, stated Sarasota Republican Party Chairman Joe Gruters in an email Saturday.

The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reported that Waechter, an official on the Sarasota-Manatee Airport Authority, has been charged with the criminal use of a stolen identity for allegedly buying a prepaid debit card to make a campaign donation in the name of Lourdes Ramirez, a Siesta Key Republican.

Read more here.

Gruters message:

Dear Fellow Republicans,

You may have read the disturbing reports in today's press regarding the activities of a former chairman of the Republican Party of Sarasota County, Bob Waechter. He is alleged to have made illegal campaign donations in last November's elections. The facts and circumstances are currently under review by the authorities.

Whether factual or not, it is important you know that the RPOS had no awareness of, nor involvement with, the alleged activities. There is no place in our party for illicit campaign tactics or disreputable behavior.

We do not and will not abide any actions that contravene the law in an attempt to advance personal or partisan political goals.

As chairman of the Republican Party of Sarasota County, I will continue my efforts to ensure that the Republican Party continues to win elections by promoting our core principles of limited government, less taxes, family values and individual responsibility.

Thank you for being informed and engaged.

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