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WC candidate withdraws from sheriff’s race

Paul Whitmore says Hatch Act prevents him from running

October 3, 2012
Anne Blankenship ( , The Daily Freeman Journal

Hamilton County Sheriff's Deputy Paul Whitmore, Webster City, who had submitted his nomination papers as an independent running for Hamilton County sheriff, says he will no longer be a candidate for that office.

In a letter released by Whitmore this week, he stated that he was not eligible to be a candidate.

"On Sept. 21, 2012, I received a call from an investigator for the U.S. Office of Special Counsel and was informed that under the Federal Hatch Act, I am not eligible to be a candidate for any partisan office," he said in the letter.

"I then verbally informed Auditor Kim Schaa of my withdrawal from candidacy for Sheriff," Whitmore wrote. "On Oct. 1, 2012, I received the formal letter from the OSC and was directed to make an announcement in writing."

He said that his letter would serve as his formal withdrawal from candidacy.

According to the U.S. Office of Special Counsel website, the Hatch Act "restricts the political activity of individuals principally employed by state or local executive agencies and who work in connection with programs financed in whole or in part by federal loans or grants." The website gave the following list as examples of the types of programs which frequently receive financial assistance from the federal government: public health, public welfare, housing, urban renewal and area redevelopment, employment security, labor and industry training, public works, conservation, agricultural, civil defense, transportation, anti-poverty, and law enforcement programs.

Schaa said that while Whitmore had removed himself from candidacy, his request had arrived too late to have his name removed from the ballot.

"Paul Whitmore's name is not able to be removed from the ballot due to the withdrawal deadline of Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2012," Schaa said. "Mr. Whitmore's name remains on the ballots in Hamilton County even though he is no longer a candidate for Hamilton County Sheriff."

Whitmore's exit from the race leaves incumbent Republican Denny Hagenson as the only candidate running for the office.



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