“Appears they just made it all up,” states national non-profit expert.
By Jacob Engels
For the third time in less than a week, the Dyer for Mayor Campaign…in coordination with the Florida Democrat party, has mailed yet another campaign flyer viciously attacking his opponent – veteran/businessman Paul Paulson with distortions, lies and innuendo concerning his establishment and stewardship of one of the two philanthropic organizations that Paulson has established.
These official non-profit groups were established to help veterans and those who have been stricken with breast cancer. The Dyer flyer outrageously attacks Paulson, a 10 year disabled American veteran, with attacks on the integrity of the non-profit, HELP THE VETS. The “sources” quoted at shown on the flyer as the 990 Forms filed by the group with the Internal Revenue Service, yet a review of these sources shows entirely the opposite picture of the one painted by Dyer and the his hit piece.
The review of the organization by the unbiased official charity rating service, GUIDESTAR, shows that Paulson’s charity gets five GUIDESTAR GOLD RATING POINTS for all categories evaluated including “Ethics & Transparency.”
While the attack flyer boldly states that “Paul Paulson took over $100,000 in salary from money that was supposed the help veterans,” the flyer stops short of the report by GUIDESTAR that shows the organization took in over $3,500,000 in donations and provided for the following programs:
“We provided over $460,000 of medical care to Veterans in 2013, for treatment not covered by the Veterans Administration. We counseled 4-6 Veterans per month on our 24/7 suicide hotline. We provided gym memberships to 1,600 Veterans in 2013, working with national private health clubs. We provided 18 athletic grants and scholarships in 2013. We started the Veterans Emergency Blood Bank, in partnership with the American Red Cross and United Blood Services, collecting over 1,000 pints of blood for Emergency Rooms around the US. We started “Vets Fighting Breast Cancer” and raised over $17,000 in 2013 for breast cancer vaccine research,” the report stated.
The attack flyer fails to mention that Paulson did not take any salary for the first year he founded the group and that the salary he did take last year, $75,000 was to administer a $3,500,000 fund on a full time basis, a salary much lower that other administrators of similar funds. There are no other paid employees of the group.
Top national fundraising expert Paul Pelletier, a longtime charity fundraiser, disputed the Dyer flyer claims.
“Clearly these attacks come from a political viewpoint and not a charitable giving standard. After review of the non-profit’s filings, the group appears to be well organized and totally transparent, which is the standard to judge any charitable group,” Pelletier said.
“It appears that those that created the flyer just made it all up,” he concluded.
The desperation tactics come at a time when the Dyer campaign finds itself on the defensive politically with the hard-charging Paulson volunteers hitting over 15,000 Orlando voters doors and a well-coordinated direct mail and advertising campaign that has resulted in polls showing Dyer’s support dropping below the 50% mark and Paulson surging.
“These are desperate tactics for a desperate campaign tied to the failures of the Dyer regime, a regime that must be removed from office on November 3, 2015. Citizens of Orlando are finally figuring out that Dyer has neglected our neighborhoods, allowed crime to control the streets and failed to balance the budget. Couple that with the anger and distrust of his usual political allies, Orlando’s historic Callahan and Parramore neighborhoods, has led Dyer to lie and distort the record of American veterans, which is truly disgusting,” Paulson stated.
“The election is Tuesday, November 3rd and at this point it is too close to call, so anticipate more desperate lies, innuendo and personal attacks to define the Dyer campaign in a unrelenting effort to cling to power,” stated Paulson campaign manager Mike Shirley.
Jacob Engels, is the Founder of East Orlando Post & Seminole County Post. He is a seasoned political operative who has led numerous statewide political groups and has worked on several high-profile local, statewide, and national races. Jacob has been interviewed on national television & radio programs, with his work having been featured in the Orlando Sentinel, New York Times, Washington Post, Miami Herald and other publications nationwide. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org