Indiana secretary of state: 'It was not me' making tweets

2013-06-22T14:00:00Z 2013-06-23T17:12:07Z Indiana secretary of state: 'It was not me' making tweetsDan Carden dan.carden@nwi.com, (317) 637-9078 nwitimes.com
June 22, 2013 2:00 pm  • 

INDIANAPOLIS | Secretary of State Connie Lawson admitted Saturday her official Twitter account was used for campaign purposes Friday, but Lawson — contradicting her spokeswoman — insisted she didn't do it.

"I did not type, post or tweet anything that came out yesterday," Lawson told The Times. "It was not me; it did not come from my iPhone."

The Republican said she was out of the Statehouse on Friday and does not yet know who from her office issued the political message on the "@SecretaryLawson" account, which Lawson said she considers official and not personal.

"I plan to get to the bottom of that" during a Monday staff meeting, she said.

The message, posted at 10:06 a.m. Indianapolis time, on a Twitter page with a background that features 66 images of the Indiana State Seal, read: "Please follow my campaign @VoteConnie for updates on our 2014 race! Please "Like" our campaign Facebook page: VoteConnie."

State ethics rules prohibit executive branch officials and employees from engaging in political activity while on duty or acting in an official capacity.

The tweet was deleted shortly after noon by Valerie Kroeger, Lawson's office spokeswoman, who said Friday that Lawson wrote and posted the message using her personal iPhone.

"Of course I deleted it," Kroeger said. "I didn't want to create any issue if anything was seeming incorrect."

She also said Lawson believed the post did not violate ethics rules because Lawson did not consider the Twitter account official.

Lawson said Saturday she called her office after discovering the message on her Twitter feed Friday and ordered it removed. She said she did not know why Kroeger thought Lawson posted the message.

Kroeger did not return telephone messages seeking comment.

Lawson was a state senator when former Gov. Mitch Daniels appointed her secretary of state March 16, 2012, to finish the term of Republican Charlie White, who was removed as the state's top elections official following six felony convictions for voter fraud, perjury and theft.

She must win the party nomination at the 2014 Republican state convention to run for her own four-year term.

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