A white Cincinnati Public School board member candidate is accused of pretending to be Black to get more votes.
The Cincinnati Enquirer reports Steven J. Megerle, who was running for a two-year term on the city’s public school board, released a campaign ad of a Black couple and three children. He captioned the picture with “protecting taxpayers.”
Current school board member Mike Moroski, a white man, outed Megerle on Twitter on Sunday, October 20.
This is wrong.— Mike Moroski (@mike_moroski) October 20, 2019
Megerle is a white guy pretending to be black to get votes. This is an internet ad.
Of course, this same man had 2 resign from a post in 2009 when he pled guilty 2 a “misdemeanor 4 his role in helping 2 anonymously pay 4 pamphlets w/ anti-gay overtones” (@WCPO). pic.twitter.com/jb3avSf0ts
Chris Seelbach, the Chincinnati City Councilman, described Megerle's ad as "disgusting, but somehow expected” on Facebook.
Megerle denied the allegation as “nonsense” in an interview with The Cincinnati Enquirer on Sunday, calling Moroski’s claim apart of a “partisan attack.” The school board election is nonpartisan, meaning each candidate’s political party is not revealed on the ballot.
He also addressed the incident on Twitter on Monday, October 1, claiming the Black family photo in his ad is a stock photo.
I am excited 2 👀 @HamCoGOP @ChairmanAlex @Black4Commish @mattforohio @votePASTOR @GoBrinkman et al. Fighting 4 all Taxpayers including my STOCK PHOTO FAMILY! @cweiser @Enquirer @GOCOAST @jwilliamscincy @HamiltonCntyOH @NathanfromCincy pic.twitter.com/uV0qTg044W— Steven J. Megerle (@CincyMegsGOP) October 22, 2019
Moroski’s tweet also blasted Megerle for his sketchy past.
Megerle, a former Covington Commissioner, was charged in Kentucky for violating campaign finance restrictions while withholding the identities of his campaign contributors and advertisers in 2009. WCPO reports Megerle anonymously paid for pamphlets with anti-gay rhetoric. Those controversial ads were intended to “stoke the fires of bigotry” against the LGBTQ community according to a Kenton County judge.
Although the conservative plead guilty to those misdemeanors, those charges have since been expunged his record.
“It's sad that partisan city councilmembers and a school board member are obsessed with tales of the past because I am focused on taking our schools from failing to first,” said Megerle. “My priorities will always be fighting for students, parents, and taxpayers."
Megerle is running against incumbents Pamela Bowers and Gary Favors for a single open school board seat. If elected, Megerle will serve on the board until December 2021.
Photo: Hero Images