Ever since the breaking of the robocall scandal back in March, the former members of the Marty Burke campaign, including Burke himself, have gone into silent running mode, including Burke's Deputy Campaign Manager Andrew Prescott.
If there's a reason that Prescott's silence stuck out a little more than Michael Sona's, Ken Morgan's or even Burke's himself it's because Prescott is (or was) a fairly active blogger under the handle Christian Conservative. The last post on that blog was dated February 5th, at least a month and a half before the robocall issue went full tilt national scandal, at which point Guelph specifically, and the Burke campaign team even more specifically, went under the microscope. On blogs and on social media, Guelph's Christian Conservative's been eerily silent.
On Wednesday, Prescott posted what he called "My Official Statement," which consisted of a verbatim quote of Romans chapter 13, verses 1 through 5 (you know, from The Bible), and a You Tube clip from CNN. The Bible quote you can read for yourself, but it's basically telling the reader to act within the bounds of the law, not just God's law, but man's because they're one and the same. God gives authority to the ruling class, ergo obeying your rulers and their laws is godly.
What exactly this proves, or says about Prescott's personal philosophy, can be taken a number of ways I think. Is he saying that he would never break the law by helping someone cheat in an election as it's against the law? Or maybe he's admitting that he did rig the robocalls because the Conservatives have God-given authority, and that passage from Romans was basically Paul saying "Respect God's Authoritah!" Even if that's not what he meant to say, there's something of a contradiction in saying God gives people authority, and as a person of God you have to respect those in authority at all times. It smacks of Christine O'Donnell's infamous remarks on Politically Incorrect in the 90s where she said that she would never tell a lie, even if Nazis were at the door and she had Jews in the attic, God would show her a way out. In other words, there's no wiggle room.
Strangely enough, The Bible verse isn't what bothered me, it was the attached You Tube clip of Lt. Gen. Russel L. Honoré telling a reporter that he's "stuck on stupid" for asking about the government response to Hurricane Rita in Louisiana following the (lack of) reaction to Hurricane Katrina just one month earlier. This is the same retort that Prescott seems to be taking with critics, both the legitimate ones and the typical internet message board bombers. If you want a real comment, you're stuck on stupid. If you want clarification, you're stuck on stupid. A legitimate philosophical question about Christian ideals versus the actions of the government, you're stuck on stupid.
Yes, this exchange, for those of us who want real answers about who knew what, when and how about the robocalls, does little for us. I understand if Prescott has been advised by lawyers to exercise his right to remain silent, but just say so. After months of trying, months of no comments, and months of new allegations mounting that suggest he may be in thick with the robocalls locally, a simple Bible verse answer and a smug retort do nothing to resolve the legitimate concerns of an electorate thinking their democracy's at stake. It would be nice to think that a man that labels himself "Christian Conservative" would take those concerns a little more seriously.
And seriously - Scotty Hertz would hate it if I didn't ad this - Andrew Prescott is always welcome to be a guest on "Beyond the Ballot Box." But maybe by extending the invitation and expecting an answer I'm "stuck on stupid."