Scott Wagman not charged with violating Florida election law

St. Petersburg, Fla.

Scott Wagman, former St. Petersburg mayoral candidate, will not be charged with violating a Florida election law.

Wagman was notified in July that he had violated a state election law that requires

106.143 Political advertisements circulated prior to election; requirements.—
(1)(a) Any political advertisement that is paid for by a candidate and that is
published, displayed, or circulated prior to, or on the day of, any election must
prominently state: “Political advertisement paid for and approved by (name of candidate),
(party affiliation), for (office sought).

Wagman was said to have violated section 106.143 of the Florida state Election Laws for not including the “political advertisement paid for and approved by Scott Wagman” dialogue in his Google campaign ads before the Sept. 1 mayoral primary election.

The former mayoral candidate argued that the number of characters allowed in the hyperlink were so few that he didn’t have enough characters to put the political disclaimer.

From the St. Petersburg Times article published just a few hours ago:

The candidate said there wasn’t room on those small, hypertext links. One click on those ads led to his campaign Web site, which Wagman said did run the disclaimer.

“Obama and McCain were doing the same thing,” he said. “We didn’t think it was hoodwinking the American public to see an ad on the side of a (Web) page. They know what happens if you click on it. People get it.”

The Florida Elections Commission has reviewed Wagman’s case and ruled that the former candidate did not willfully leave out the disclaimer, according to the St. Petersburg Times political blog, the Bay Buzz.

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