Wednesday, September 20, 2006

The three faces of Mattie Day, Minnis Minion

Earlier today, a reader sent a copy of The Mount Hood-Gorge Connection (warning: PDF) to me. Its the September 2006 issue containing a rather gag-inducing profile of GOP House Speaker Karen Minnis. For your gag reflex pleasure, here's a sample:

John Minnis came into Karen’s world of public policy in 1998. The girl who wanted for shoes and who could belt out a song found a new voice as State Representative
and now Speaker. She is leaving footprints of compassionate and disciplined leadership in the halls of the community’s house. Karen Minnis defied the odds that were against her as a woman who was raised by uneducated parents in poverty. She has risen above the obstacles, nurtured her children, stood by her husband and now stands in a place of humble leadership.
This is quite an article coming from a periodical which claims itself to be an "independent publication". Its like Joan of Arc meets Mother Teresa meets Dr John McLoughlin sans male stuff.

Another point of interest with this piece is the author. The byline says by Mattie Day for The MHG Connection. Mattie Day is also listed as a "contributing writer" (see page 3 of the PDF) for the paper. (The paper also contains a "letter to the editor" from Toni Manning of Friends Who Believe Rob Brading Wants Little Kids To View Porn While We Take No Personal Responsibility For Our Parenting).

Oddly, Mattie Day is also listed as communications assistant to the Speaker. In other words, her salary is paid for at least in part with our tax dollars.

But the rabbit hole goes even deeper. There is also a Mattie Day listed on staff with Adams and Company, Douchebag of Double Dealing Dirt Chuck Adams' company.

That looks an awful lot to me like the same person is writing an "independent" article about Karen Minnis without disclosing her business relationship to the Speaker (where she draws a taxpayer funded salary) while subsequently drawing another salary with Minnis' political consultant--again, without disclosing as such in the article.

But it would be wrong to jump to conclusions without at least checking with the paper, right? After all, there could be thousands of "Mattie Days" who mill about the greater Portland-Salem metro region. Maybe several of them just happen to be working in several different capacities for Karen Minnis and her consultant.

Hey. It could happen.

So TJ called them up for me yesterday, querying in his inimitable style about the seemingly very busy Mattie Day. Here's his description of how it went as relayed to me in email:
I introduced myself as TJ from Loaded Orygun to a woman who answered the
phone, and appeared to be in some kind of managerial position with hiring
authorization. When I asked if Mattie was a regular columnist, she
said she (Mattie) was going to be doing a lot of writing for "her" (the
voice on the phone and by extension one assumes the paper) in the future.
She said they were currently in negotiations. I said, so it's a paid
position, right? She asked "who are you again?" I repeated myself, and asked
"but she would be paid?" She said, "that's kind of a, uh..." to which I
replied, "I'm only asking if she's paid, not what she'll be paid," and then
asked if she was aware Mattie worked as the Communications Asst for Speaker
Minnis, and was also on staff for Chuck Adams and Company, who do consulting
for Minnis. She asked, "where are you from again?" and I repeated myself,
then asked the question again: were you aware...etc? She cut me off and
said, "what's your phone number?" which I gave, and then asked again, "were
you aware..." [click]

I called back and said we might have been accidentally cut off, repeating my
identity, question and contact number for the paper's voice mail.

Not so forthcoming, eh? It doesn't look good.

So far I haven't been able to reach anyone with the Speaker's Office or the campaign to clarify and verify this strange, unsolved mystery of Mattie Day.

I'll post an update as it becomes relevant.