Broadcast journalist Gary Daigneault was preparing for his coverage of the 2014 elections at his KCDZ radio station in Joshua Tree on Wednesday when something on San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon’s campaign website caught his eye.
Daigneault began perusing McMahon’s website and clicked on the link that said “endorsements.” He began scrolling down the list of more than 1,600 names when he saw it: He and his wife, Cindy, were listed as having endorsed McMahon for sheriff.
The only problem was that he and his wife had never endorsed McMahon, said Daigneault, whose name, along with 27 others on the endorsement list, appeared twice.
“I never endorse anybody,” Daigneault said.
He said he called the number on McMahon’s website, and a woman who answered the phone, later identified as McMahon’s wife, told Daigneault his and his wife’s names would be removed.
The list was immediately removed from the website.
Daigneault noticed several other names on McMahon’s endorsement list — people he knew — and placed calls to four of them: Joni Daniel and Robin Anaya, whose names also appeared twice on the list, Twentynine Palms Councilman Jay Corbin, and Twentynine Palms Planning Commissioner Carey Alderson. They were all surprised by the news, Daigneault said.
“I never endorsed anyone,” said Robin Anaya, 57, a Twentynine Palms businesswoman who owns the Cowboy Attic secondhand store. “If I was to sit down and think about it, that would upset me because they’re using my name without my permission.”
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