Margiotta denies responsibility for YouTube videos

Ron Margiotta

October 7, 2011 1:12:47 PM PDT
Wake County Board of Education Chairman Ron Margiotta is denying accusations that he posted videos on YouTube attacking his opponent, Democrat Susan Evans.

However, Margiotta doesn't disagree with the videos' messages. One of the videos show Evans talking during a Wake school board meeting about how her children have benefitted from magnet schools.

"Their whole view of the world is so much broader than that of their western wake neighbors, who have attended their neighborhood schools," she's heard saying.

Now, some are asking if Margiotta asked staff to gather the videos for the purpose of his campaign.

"For somebody to say that I've requested information on a specific item on the agenda, I think it's a stretch," he said.

When contacted by the I-Team, Michael Evans, the former chief of communications for Wake County schools said, "Ron Margiotta and I exchanged emails in which he requested DVD copies of the public comment portion from three to four school board meetings. To my knowledge and recollection, no one else requested this material."

Margiotta said he has asked to see information related to the public comment sections of some board meetings, but he denies having anything to do with acquiring the video for campaign purposes or posting it on YouTube.

"Oh, God no," Margiotta added. "I'm not a YouTube person. Believe me."

He added that videos of school board meetings like the one on YouTube, can be easily found online.

"They're available anywhere in the world," Margiotta said.

Evans was not available for an interview about this story, but she responded in an email, saying in-part, "[Voters] want our focus to be on how to bring our community together to improve our schools...the last thing they want to hear about is more mudslinging from Ron Margiotta."

She issued another campaign statement Friday (.pdf)

ABC11 asked Margiotta if someone from his campaign put the videos together. He said he didn't know but added that if they did, he didn't see anything wrong with the videos.

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