George Buck supporter accuses Amanda Makki of being a terrorist
George Buck supporters showed up outside an Amanda Makki fundraiser and falsely accused her of being a terrorist.

Ken Gorey
Spoiler: She's not.

A group of George Buck supporters showed up Thursday to a fundraising event for rival Amanda Makki waving a sign accusing Makki of being a terrorist.

She’s not, and Buck himself condemned the accusation.

Buck and Makki are two of five Republican candidates for Florida’s 13th Congressional District, which is currently held by Democratic U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist.

Buck already came under fire once for implying in an email early last month that progressive U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar should be hanged.

A photo, which has since been removed, showed up on protest organizer Ken Gorey’s Facebook page over the weekend calling Makki a terrorist.

Gorey organized a rally at Pete and Shorty’s in Pinellas Park on Thursday evening in response to a planned Makki fundraiser at the same location. The small group waved pro-Trump signs, displayed Buck’s campaign signs and held a lone sign reading “Amanda Makki is a terrorist.”

In a Facebook post ahead of the event, Gorey encouraged supporters to attend to “KEEP AMERICAN BORN CITIZEN’S in Congress,” errors and emphasis his own.

“Wake up Pinellas County we do not need Makki who is Iranian-born and worked for RINO Senator Murkowski for 7 years,” Gorey wrote.

Gorey was referring to Lisa Murkowski, a Republican U.S. Senator from Alaska for whom Makki served as a senior health adviser. RINO is a popular criticism of moderate Republicans and stands for “Republican in name only.”

Asked about the event, Buck said he was not involved in its planning and condemned the racially motivated claim that Makki is a terrorist.

“That’s not true. She’s a very nice lady. I would never condone that,” Buck told Florida Politics.

He cited his experience, including writing several books on terrorism and work with the University of South Florida and St. Petersburg College on terrorism-related content.

Buck said his campaign is running against Crist, not Makki, though he would have to win the GOP nomination before facing Crist in the general election this November.

However, in a Facebook post after the pro-Buck rally, Buck defended his supporters after law enforcement was called in objection to the group’s rally.

“My supporters took it upon themselves to hold a pro-George sign wave today in Pinellas Park at the same time and near where Amanda Makki held her very small event (low turnout),” Buck wrote. “I do not appreciate the Makki campaign calling the police on my supporters (who are also strong Trump supporters) who were sign-waving in a public area.”

Makki’s campaign said they did not call the police — management at the venue did.

A video, which has also since been taken down from Gorey’s Facebook page, showed an interaction with law enforcement and a business proprietor, but no one from Makki’s campaign appeared in the video.

“You can attack me all you want, but don’t intimidate and attack my supporters. Thankfully the police officers told my supporters they could stay,” Buck wrote on Thursday.

“Ask yourself — do you really want a representative who can’t handle a little feedback from constituents?”

Buck said that even though he condemns the group’s written comments attacking Makki, an attorney and former George W. Bush appointee to the Pentagon’s General Councils office on anti-terrorism issues, he understands it is their First Amendment right to do so. He said he has already spoken with members of the group, which often refer to themselves as the “Trump Squad,” expressing his discontentment with the message.

A spokesperson for Makki’s campaign condemned the group’s message.

“These desperate attacks are absurd. President George W. Bush trusted Amanda Makki enough to appoint her to the Pentagon General Council’s office after 9/11 because she was fluent in Farsi, she went on to play an important role helping the fight against terrorism. It’s unfortunate some continue to level baseless attacks with nothing to back it up.”

Janelle Irwin Taylor

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as senior reporter for WMNF News. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected].


  • Ward Posey

    January 27, 2020 at 5:49 pm

    George Buck will not get my vote, period.

    • Ken Gorey

      January 28, 2020 at 8:59 am

      I remember Ward Posey your the Trump Hater From Seminole Florida Makes sense that you are backing Makki . Check out his Facebook page

  • Capt Matt Bruce Ret

    January 27, 2020 at 7:12 pm

    This is ridiculous! This protestor needs to be banned from any more George Buck or GOP Events. There is NO place for this kind of action anyplace, anytime or anywhere in life or politics. It’s time to grow up and act like adults.

    • Wilma

      January 27, 2020 at 8:04 pm

      You are too funny. Ever heard of the FIRST AMMENDMENT? THEY WERE ON A PUBLIC SPOT.

  • Ken Gorey

    January 27, 2020 at 7:25 pm

    Thank you so much for getting the word out Makki work for RINO Senator Murkowski for 7 years . She’s lived her for only a short time and raised $400.000 has anyone asked where this windfall came from or you Just interested in what she said . I wish you had contacted me seams funny to me you didn’t . True George Buck New nothing about this and condemned it . I figured that The press will be at the coffee meet And greet come out side and say hello .I noticed you didn’t say much about The fat Albanian guy who was yelling At us on a public sidewalk and called police on Trump Supporters I guess that was OK . Funny a few months ago she called herself a Persian American instead of Iranian-born American ???? Hope to see you soon

    • Ken Gorey

      January 27, 2020 at 7:50 pm

      I should have read the entire post I didn’t know you were blind that you missed the fat Guy next to the restaurant manager yelling At us . I guess I should put the video back on . You said no one was out side that was her campaign that’s a load of crap ls that not her Manager /boyfriend standing there you know The owner of Jessie’s where The coffee greet and meet is

  • Wilma

    January 27, 2020 at 8:09 pm


  • Proud George Buck Supporter

    January 27, 2020 at 8:31 pm

    Amanda Makki’s own brother was criminally charged with the murder of Makki’s mother in Maryland. Google it. Makki has 0 ties to Pinellas County. She is a DC lobbyist for big Pharma that is buying her way into the campaign. Makki is a never Trumper. NEVER vote for Iranian Makki.

  • Dan

    January 27, 2020 at 10:07 pm

    Hmmm… sounds like reporting should be on the Trump impeachment trial… “It’s unfortunate some continue to level baseless attacks with nothing to back it up.”

  • Denise Hodges

    January 27, 2020 at 11:10 pm

    Funny how the Rinos (really liberals) call “foul” when they get attacked but it’s ok to smear any real conservative, anytime any place. You act just like a liberal which you are. You can dish it out but you can’t take it. The first amendment works for EVERYONE not just Rinos in sheep’s clothing.

  • Ken Gorey

    January 28, 2020 at 8:26 am

    Just a follow-up to the fake news This reporter wrote anyone that wants to see the video message me on Facebook and I will send you a copy and you will see the lies Florida politics reporter Taylor wrote No one from Makki group was outside only the manager Taylor is lieing Makki is lieing and The fat GUY they said wasn’t there was lieing MESSAGE Me ON Facebook for the video

Comments are closed.


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