The race between Boca Raton City Councilman Anthony Majhess and challenger Frank Chapman has become an epic political brawl and fascinating political theater.
The two candidates have attacked each other non-stop, and third-party groups out of Tallahassee have been blasting away. A group called “Voters Response” is working for Majhess, and one named “Restore Florida” is for Chapman.
The Chapman campaign has been attacking Majhess in part for his alleged drug use while he was a firefighter in Boca Raton. Majhess has been attacking Chapman on old charges dating to when he was a kid working for his father’s carpet cleaning company, and for a 2004 dispute Chapman had with the IRS over double-billing of taxes on a boat purchase.
There’s some truth to both sides’ charges. Chapman did get in a jam when he was 22 years old and working for his father, and Majhess, according to his employment records, did resign as a Boca Raton firefighter in 1999. His records are redacted with the notation, “Record redacted pursuant to Section 440.102 (8)(a) Florida Statues.” That section of Florida law details the requirements of the “drug-free workplace program.” Chapman did have a dispute with the IRS in 2004 over being double-taxed on a boat purchase, and the dispute was resolved. Big deal.
Of course, if one listens to the Chapman campaign, one would think Majhess is right now smoking crack on Dixie Highway, and if you listen to Majhess, one would think Chapman’s problems were fresh and unrelated to the poor decision-making of a young man doing what his father told him to do.
While each side’s supporters take it as gospel that the other candidate is a horrible person, I know too much about waging negative campaigns to take either party’s charges at face value.
Frankly, young men who later grow up to be good men can make stupid decisions before they mature. I don’t hold Chapman’s mistakes as a 22-year-old against him, and I don’t hold what happened to Majhess in 1999 against him. All of it is irrelevant to the kind of leader both of these men are today.
This isn’t the College of Cardinals, and I’m not voting to elect a new pope. I’m voting to elect a new city councilman, and I want the candidate I vote for to be willing to cut costs, and not raise taxes.
Chapman promises to cut costs and lower taxes if he’s elected, and hopefully, he’ll keep those promises if he wins.
As I documented in February in “Boca Raton Councilman Anthony Majhess flip-flops on taxes,” Majhess has already changed his position on taxes.
On Sept. 26, 2011, Majhess was the swing vote in a 3-2 Boca Raton City Council vote that did indeed raise taxes. In fact, not only did Majhess vote to raise taxes, he said that he “would have even supported a further increase in the millage rate.” And yet, his campaign literature says he’s committed to lowering taxes. That’s an inconsistency in my book, an ugly one.
When BizPac Review reporter Michele Kirk gave Majhess another opportunity to get his side of the tax story out, Majhess launched into his version of “the moon landings were staged in Jack Furnari’s backyard” conspiracy theory. Details and video at “Boca Councilman Anthony Majhess is either delusional or a liar.”
Majhess has shown an astonishing inability to separate fact from fiction. Majhess has failed to take responsibility for his own actions while he was on the council, and refused to tell the voters the truth about his vote to raise taxes.
I cannot even contemplate voting for someone as disconnected from reality as Majhess seems to be.
I’m voting for Frank Chapman.
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