A Democrat who garnered just 1,840 votes when she ran against U.S. Rep. Jim Himes in the 2008 primary filed a lawsuit May 18 against one of her party’s gubernatorial candidates.
Lisa “Lee” Whitnum of Greenwich, who is best known for dating U.S. Sen. John Kerry and writing a book called “Hedge Fund Mistress,” filed a lawsuit against former Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy. There have been no motions filed in the lawsuit since the initial complaint and Whitnum never returned several phone calls or emails over the past few weeks for comment on it.
The lawsuit alleges that on the day before the 2008 primary, Malloy called some of Whitnum’s statements “anti-Semitic,” at a press conference “aired three times on Channel 12.” Whitnum claims in the five-page lawsuit, which she filed herself without legal representation, that Malloy’s words were intended to “stifle the topics that she believes are of vital interest to the national security and financial well-being of the United State of America.”
Perhaps coincidentally, Whitnum’s new book is titled, “Anti-AIPAC not Anti-Semitic: Breaking the Israel Lobby’s Control, A Patriot’s Guide.” It is due be released this month, but it’s not clear whether the book will be self-published or offered by a publishing house, or even if it exists at all.
Malloy, a former prosecutor, didn’t seemed too worried about the lawsuit when he spoke to a group of reporters earlier this month at the Capitol. He said he had been served and the papers were on a table at his home. While he plans on returning them to court he said he’s sticking by his statements.
“In 2008, I stood with Jim Himes and with leaders of Connecticut’s Jewish community in denouncing comments by Ms. Whitnum that we viewed as anti-Semitic,” said Malloy. “I do not believe that sort of rhetoric has any place in our political discourse, and I will continue to speak out vehemently against discrimination in any form, be it religious, racial, gender-based, or otherwise.”
Whitnum maintains in the lawsuit that she never made any anti-Semitic remarks. But it is unclear why Malloy is the only defendant.
“At no time did Ms. Whitnum speak, nor write, disparagingly about any religious group therefore, the plaintiff seeks to define what it means to be ‘anti-Semitic’ and to make it defamatory to use the term to stifle much needed discussion as it related to the well-being of the United States of America,” Whitnum writes in her lawsuit.
On almost all of Whitnum’s websites she criticizes the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, and its influence on Washington.
“It’s time for a healthy arms-length separation from Israel – a country that will not lift one finger to resolve the reasons why its neighbors are angry, the oppression of their Christian and Muslim underclass (also known as the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict),” Whitnum wrote on the website for her 2010 U.S. Senate campaign.
The lawsuit does not call for specific damages or compensation. It asks for damages to be determined at trial. The statute of limitations on lawsuits such as Whitnum’s is two years, which is likely the reason she is filing it now.
Whitnum was unable to be reached for comment, so it’s unclear if she will seek to petition her way into the U.S. Senate primary like she did in 2008 when she ran against Himes.
According to the Greenwich Time, Whitnum attended the Republican nominating convention two weeks ago instead of the Democratic convention across town at the Expo Center. By the time she arrived, the nominating process was under way, making it impossible for her to be among those considered for nomination.