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April 01, 2002 6:59 pm

Park County GOP headquarters vandalized

Written by Tribune Staff

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The Cody Park County Republican campaign office at 1262 Sheridan Ave. was vandalized sometime Monday night, apparently by a fan or fans of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama. Tribune photo by CJ Baker

Park County Republicans awoke Tuesday morning to find that their campaign office had undergone an unwelcome change.

In yellow window paint, overnight vandals had scrawled “Obama” on the headquarter's front windows and affixed Barack Obama posters over the GOP's John McCain signs.

“That's just the kind of people that support him (Obama),” said GOP volunteer Joni Seuferer.

Fellow volunteer and Cody resident Terry Hinkle said two McCain signs have been stolen from his yard over the past week, and he blames Obama supporters.

“They have been stealing signs all around town,” he said.

However, the problem appears to be bi-partisan.

“We have been having a horrible problem with people stealing our signs,” said Park County Democrats Chair Margaret Whited. She estimated that a “minimum” of 75 Obama yard signs have been taken.

Hinkle noted the cost of the signs as a concern.

“We know everyone has their political views and we understand that,” Hinkle said. “But we certainly don't condone destroying other people's material.”

Whited was skeptical that Democrats were to blame for the Republican vandalism.

“I wouldn't doubt if they did it themselves, because they don't have it on the issues,” said Park County Democrats Chair Margaret Whited. “I can't imagine any of our people doing that.”

With no witnesses, Cody Assistant Chief of Police George Menig said no one knows for sure.

“It could be anybody,” he said.

Menig said police plan to give the area special attention on the overnight shift, though he said the act was nothing new.

“This happens every election season,” he said. “Not all of it gets reported.”

“We all want to do things like that, but we never would,” Seuferer said. “It's reprehensible.”