Saturday, March 31, 2007

Has The Identity of the Phoneix Been Unmasked

Has Identity of The Phoneix Been Unmasked?

Last year, before filing for the Council even opened, another anonymous letter was sent to voters in the first Ward attacking Councilman Riddler. It was sent in an identical white envelope with a first class stamp and no return address. The writer of the letter at the time, said he would use the name “Phoenix” to disguise his true identity, but that he was going to run against Councilman Riddler and reveal his true identity later.

The letter said the writer was also responsible for conducting an electronic phone survey as the first step in organizing a recall similar to the one being conducted against Councilwoman Greer and Councilman Mark Brown. Those recall efforts we know were partly funded through a committee set up by Ken Kielty through a Jefferson City Bank. And, in fact, such electronic phone calls were made into Councilman Riddler’s ward asking if voters would support a recall at the same time such calls were being made about Councilmen Brown and Councilwoman Greer.

After making the phone surveys, the group behind the calls decided not to try to recall Councilman Riddler and focused their attention on Greer and Brown. The group circulating the recall petitions against Greer was later connected to charges of forgery, following an investigation by St. Charles County Prosecuting Attorney Jack Banas.

Kielty has also been mentioned as working with Buddy Hardin as campaign consultants for Richard Veit, who is challenging Councilman Riddler. Neither live in the First Ward. Kielty is running for the City Council himself in Ward Eight against former Councilman Mike Klinghammer and Buddy Hardin, who operates a State License Bureau as Kielty once did, is running for the Orchard Farm School Board.

Local political pundits are now speculating if the “Phoenix” and Richard Veit are one in the same or if Ken Kielty or Buddy Hardin had a hand in producing or distributing these illegal mailers on Veit’s behalf.