Hey Burlington – Let’s Have a Tea Party, Shall We?

Hey Burlington – did you know that one of the Tea Party’s rising stars is right here in Burlington? And, he not only sits on the school board but is hoping to get elected to the House, too?

You didn’t? Well … guess what. It’s true.

First off: Free speech is a great thing in this country; it’s even protected under the Constitution. But as with most rights, with said freedom comes responsibility AND accountability.

Scot Shumski likes to claim he has no connection to the Tea Party or American Majority, but an apparent alter ego Twitter account of @SlappyWhyte does it for him. Clever, eh? Not really – especially he, er Slappy, starts DELETING them when he gets wind that people might hold him “accountable.”  How Nixonian! As we all know, it’s never the “crime” that gets a pol in trouble, it’s the cover-up after the fact that angers voters.

Below are some choice screen shots, as well as a downloadable spreadsheet that shows you ALL of the tweets he’s deleted.

You see, the point is that whenever the issue of Tea Party connections and influence arise, Shumski feigns ignorance. And, people shouldn’t read too much (wink, wink) into the fact that he rakes in thousands of dollars from Tea Party Sugar Mama Lenore Broughton (who supports the privatization of public education) and was trained by American Majority, a Koch Brothers-connected group that travels the country training people to get on, and take over, school boards and then wreak havoc.

Check out this headline and story from the American Majority blog: “Liberal School Board Flipped in Wisconsin”. Ah, nullifying collective bargaining agreements. Ronnie Reagan would be so, so proud.

As an aside — Broughton’s bag man Tayt Brooks is American Majority’s state director and he loves him some Tea Party in the librul bastion of Burlington. Take his recent headline: “American Majority-Trained Scot Shumski becomes prominent School Board Voice”. Brooks is clearly basking in the glow of Shumski’s meteoric rise.

Too bad for Brooks that Shumski isn’t willing to return the favor and tout his American Majority training and Tea Party bonafides in his campaign literature (ditto Kevin Garrison, and David Kirk who comprise the Tea Party Triumverate).

Though, on American Majority’s blog, Shumski did thank them for his March victory.

But in real life, Shumski flatly denies any undue influence and calls American Majority nonpartisan. Nonpartisan, perhaps, but from the links above it’s clear they have an agenda.

“American Majority is a nonpartisan organization and cannot advocate political positions,” wrote Shumski on Oct. 3. “I have never given money to a Tea Party organization, held membership in a Tea Party organization, identified myself with the Tea Party moniker.”

Perhaps not as Scot Shumski, but his alter ego is happy to promote Tea Party principles and positions and even attended the American Majority candidate training, too, as you’ll see below, and believes Tea Party principles should be the core of any GOP candidate’s platform. Perhaps Slappy should remind Shumski.

You see, the problem with weasel politicians is in this day and age is that if you’re not careful (and Slappy got a little sloppy as you’ll see in a minute) you can have your digital footprints pretty well mapped out and traced back to your doorstep.

In fact, you can go to this site and type in @slappywhyte. The epicenter of Slappy’s tweets originate awfully close to Scot’s real-life house and “home office.” Here’s a pic for you in case the site doesn’t load, or Slappy turns off geolocation:

Screen Shot 2014-10-23 at 11.14.24 AM

The Tweets below connect the mild-mannered, stay-at-home dad of three with a more rabid Tea Party self that loathes Pres. Barack Obama (traitor!) and hearts Ayn Rand.

Personally, I’m fine with Shumski wanting to be a mini Rand Paul—to each his own. But, at least be open and honest with your constituents. That’s true accountability, not just words on a sign that you drag out every year or proclaim to the media.

Speaking of words, shall we read some screen shots?

Slappy, er, Scot really thinks American Majority is the way to go forward:


Then, there’s this one from when Scot, er, Slappy, I mean Scot, won his school board seat:

Slappy Whyte Twitter copy

OK, not convinced? How about this gem from Slappy around the time when he, I mean Shumski, became a stay-at-home dad:


Which is interesting … because around the same time, Shumski posted:


Two Mr. Moms! What luck! Having sympathetic support is necessary when you’re trying to keep your alter egos straight and raise three kids.

Screen Shot 2014-10-22 at 10.43.28 AM

Especially when there’s the possibility of Lyme. That’s gotta be scary.


But, the fun really begins when apparently some local journalists get wind of Slappy, er, Scot, er Slappy’s antics.

And, he starts deleting Tweets … tsk, tsk. Now, we all know it’s not the “crime” that trips up most slippery pols, it’s trying to cover it up after the fact.

Let’s see what Slappy Scot deleted … Oh, goodness, no – you mean he deleted evidence of attending an American Majority training? Ayn Rand would be displeased.

Hey @AlexisinVT followers……guess what? I got to meet the rock star in person today at the #AmericanMajority training. Jealous? Jan 18, 2014
One of the nicest compliments @mrzmazz. Thank you! Jan 18, 2014
Any conservatives out there who want activist training contact @Am_national. Should be required training for all conservatives. Jan 18, 2014
Another lesson from @AM_National conservative training “if #Dem candidate visits every house 4x, do it 5x”. No replacing hard work. #vtpoli Jan 18, 2014
Sitting in on some great conservative activist training by @AM_National @UVM_YAL and the Ethan Allen Institute. Jan 18, 2014

And, this one

If you think about it, #TeaParty principles should be the heart of every #GOP elected official. @teapartypassion @kmecf Feb 05, 2014

But, apparently you just shouldn’t let voters know about your Tea Party principles – especially if they live in Burlington, Vermont.

Here’s a link to the handy spreadsheet of Slappy’s deleted Tweets.


3 responses to “Hey Burlington – Let’s Have a Tea Party, Shall We?

  1. Well done, Shay. Now that would be a great “Fair Game” column! (Perhaps you can read into that last sentence that I’m less than enamored with the column these days.) BTW, interesting to note how recent reporting on the Burlington School District resignations mostly dances around the question of which school board members made it impossible for the three administrators.

    • Thanks Bill – good to hear from you! I think Paul is finding his way in the column, and it certainly took me awhile before I really hit my stride. Early on it was pretty rough, and I probably pulled more punches than I needed. But hey, it’s time for someone else to make it their own. I’m “retired” and despite this one blog post, plan to keep it that way. Hope all is well with you.

  2. Pingback: Unite the Right | underwood

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