Veterans group backs Christine Quinn over Kathy Castor in CD 14 race

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Christine Quinn, the Republican running against Democratic incumbent Kathy Castor in Florida’s 14th Congressional District next week, has received an endorsement from a veteran’s nonprofit group criticizing Castor for not being responsive to their previous outreach. However, the group itself has been labeled by the Tampa Bay Times as one of the worst charitable organizations in the country.

“In 20 years of making endorsements for federal office, rarely has the Center for American Homeless Veterans found such a decisive and compelling case for the endorsement of a federal candidate,” said Brian Hampton, the president of the Center for American Homeless Veterans (CAHV) in announcing its support for Quinn. “CAHV gives its absolute and emphatic endorsement to Christine Quinn to be elected to the Congress, where voters can be assured that she will be a stalwart champion for American veterans.”

The Center for American Homeless Veterans is an advocacy organization (a nonprofit 501 (c)(4)) that educates the public about homeless veterans and creates awareness of solutions to this problem. They publish, print, and distribute The Veteran’s Vision and they outreach to Congress regarding the needs of homeless veterans.

It also does business as American Homeless and Disabled Veterans (AHDV), and also goes under the Association for Homeless and Disabled Veterans.

In his statement, Hampton criticized Congresswoman Castor’s office for ignoring his entreaties.

“During the spring and summer of 2016, CAHV contacted the leadership of incumbent Congresswoman Kathy Castor’s campaign four times, making phone calls, asking for the candidate’s platform on American veterans, and inviting her to affirm the Veterans’ Bill of Rights (VBOR).

“The opponent’s campaign manager could not be bothered; they did not respond, and they did not take calls after plenty of details were provided. The leadership and mentality of a campaign come from the top. Based on the evidence, the documented and clear conclusion is that Kathy Castor is unresponsive for American veterans.”

In 2014, the Tampa Bay Times listed the group in its report on America’s worst charities, claiming that their charity tax filing in 2010 was for less than $3,000.

Castor is predicted to defeat Quinn in next week’s election. Although redistricting has made it less Democratic leaning, it’s still considered a very safe seat for the Democrats.

A call to Castor’s campaign office was not immediately returned on Thursday.

Mitch Perry

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served five years as political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. Mitch also was assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley and is a San Francisco native who has lived in Tampa since 2000. Mitch can be reached at [email protected]



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