Lee Whitnum. Who?


Lee Whitnum. Who?


When I first learned Greenwich resident Lee Whitnum was entering the race to run against Chris Shays as our fourth district representative, I wondered who she was. The last person to run against Shays, Diane Farrell was well known, a Westport first selectwoman who had certainly worked quite hard at campaigning throughout the district. Twice. But Lee was a mystery. After phoning the chair of the Weston DTC, early last winter, asking to be added as a speaker to the agenda of the next meeting and receiving an invitation, for some unexplained and unexcused reason, she didn’t show up. As I understand, she called again and got invited to the following DTC meeting. Guess what. Another no show. Next, because I was a delegate to the fourth Congressional District nominating convention, I get a letter from her announcing once again her candidacy and plans to speak at the Bridgeport convention, on May 13. I should have suspected something was amiss when her letter stated “The outcome of your vote will determine if there will be a Democratic Primary in the fourth Congressional District, a district that hasn’t had a Democratic Primary in decades.” Huh?


Could have sworn we had a primary in ’06. In fact, I am sure of it. I worked at the poll from 5:30 A.M. until past 10 P.M. Diane Farrell and Ned Lamont won their races here in that Weston Democratic primary. Anyhow, guess who didn’t come to the convention? Right. No Lee. And that was the convention where Jim Himes received the nomination to run on the Democratic ticket for Congress.


Well, I wouldn’t want to spread rumors, be labeled a neocon or Nazi supporter, so I will say if you want to give Lee a second thought, google or Yahoo her. Read her own site; www.leewhitnum2008.com. You will learn, for example, “We did not fundraise. There was no budget for it. But, I’ve been assured by Democratic groups that if I win the nomination, money will be provided to beat Shays.”


Her qualifications seem to be that she despises Jimmy but likes Chris, hates immigrants — both legal and illegal, wrote two novels and published them herself (with sales allegedly hovering around zero), had a defense software engineering career but is now a substitute teacher in Stamford, has no discernible town, county or district political experience, has appeared at only two Democratic Town Committees meetings in Fairfield county, had a self-publicized romance with John Kerry (before he married Teresa), and somehow got the required number of signatures on petitions to earn a line on the ballot for the Democratic primary on August 12th.


Why should you care? Why should you vote? For starters, you’re paying for it. Obviously, it will cost every town in the district to conduct an election that would have been avoided if not for Lee’s successful petition in an otherwise pointless campaign. The estimate for the Weston election: about $5,000. It’s not the end of the world. It’s just that Lee did almost nothing to work for the nomination. She admits she has raised no campaign funds. But it is certain she will end up wasting our time and money.


Jim, or Jimmy Himes, as his first campaign TV commercial identified him, will consign her to the dustbin of history, where coincidentally her two novels already are. By the way, her better known “Hedge Fund Mistress,” a story about a Greenwich mistress at that, is offered online at $24.99 used, and, cryptically, $11.90 new.  I think I‘ll wait for the movie.


Oh, she just challenged Jim to a debate. Maybe two. But only if he picks up half the costs for renting a venue. I will put my money on another no show.


Bob Gardner


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