Political activist Gregory Graf has made several defamatory statements against the Idaho Dispatch and myself, Idaho Dispatch Editor Greg Pruett, on Twitter.
The tweets are about an incident where someone passed out flyers at a homeless shelter to send them to Idaho Republican Party Chairman Tom Luna’s pizza event on Thursday evening. Luna was hosting a “Pizza for Patriots” event for convention delegates, but flyers were passed out at a local homeless shelter in Twin Falls telling individuals to go to Luna’s event, according to the Idaho Capital Sun.
For the record, I am not at the Idaho Republican Party’s summer convention, nor is anyone there representing the Idaho Dispatch. Any information we have about what is taking place at the convention only occurs if someone notifies us of events or votes.
Over the last month, I have fought off two infections in my foot from surgery, a week-long fever, migraines, severe exhaustion, and now severe back pain. The back pain has left me unable to sit for long periods, bend over to clean or change my baby’s diaper, and drive for longer than 20 minutes.
I felt it was better to stay home, not cover the convention, and try to rest. Needless to say, my mind was not on what was happening at the convention, and I told people who asked if I was going that the only story I was likely going to write about was the vote on who will be the Idaho Republican Party Chairman.
Yesterday, when I logged into Twitter, I noticed several “notifications” and checked to see what they were. It was at that time that I noticed a notification that someone had responded to “@gsgraf” which I knew to be political activist Gregory Graf.
Graf is currently being sued by Rep. Chad Christensen and has filed his own counter lawsuit in which he named me, Dustin Hurst, EmmaLee Robinson, and Christensen in the suit. Details of those lawsuits will be released in a forthcoming article.
When I went to Graf’s Twitter feed, there were two tweets in which he claimed I knew about the incident and that I wasn’t going to report on it to cover for my friends who distributed the flyers. Here is the first tweet Graf posted:
Hey @Idahodispatch are you going to cover this, or are you going to cover for your friends?Advertisement
Most likely you’ll continue to prove you’re nothing more than IFF’s propaganda site. #idpol
Here is the second tweet Graf made, insinuating I knew about the pizza incident:
It looks like a real journalist scooped @idahodispatch. Of course Pruett was likely never going to let his audience know his friends may be truly awful people who might support this terrible behavior.
Graf, without any evidence, claims that I had knowledge of the incident and that I was going to cover for my friends who did it. Additionally, Graf continues his false claim that Idaho Dispatch is a “propaganda” site for the Idaho Freedom Foundation. This is a false claim he has made on several occasions.
No one at the IFF owns any part of the Idaho Dispatch, nor does the Idaho Dispatch take orders from any political organization, politician, activist, or anyone else for that matter.
Again, I had nothing to do with this incident, nor do I know who did it. Reading Graf’s tweets was the first I had even heard of the incident which had taken place the day before.
Those at the Idaho Dispatch, including myself, would never condone tricking homeless people into going to a political event. We also don’t condone Graf’s defamatory statements against the Idaho Dispatch.
Idaho Dispatch’s legal team can determine if Graf’s statements are “defamation per se,” in which a reckless disregard for truth was made. Additionally, our legal advisors can determine whether any action will be taken concerning Graf’s tweets.
I do know that Graf was in contact with the Idaho Capital Sun reporter who covered the story.
Idaho Dispatch did not reach out to Graf about this article because he previously told us he would not participate in commenting on Idaho Dispatch articles except for when his lawsuit against the four individuals previously mentioned is over.
Note: This is the first time Idaho Dispatch has commented on attacks against our company, and we are only doing so because of the nature of the false accusations made by Gregory Graf. We felt that it was necessary to comment on this particular attack because Graf implied that our company knew about and was covering for individuals who distributed the flyers to homeless people. We do our best to avoid commenting on issues in a personal matter, but because of potential legal implications, we wanted to make our position clear.
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Tags: Gregory Graf, Idaho Capital Sun, Pizza, Tom Luna