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Video Promoting Chafee’s DNC Speech Removed From YouTube After Complaint

The video, produced by a Chafee staffer on his own time, included the url to the governor’s state website.


A video made to announce Gov. Lincoln Chafee’s speech at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., earlier this month has been removed from YouTube following .

The video – which featured audio from speeches by Pres. Obama and Gov. Chafee – had ended with a list of references, including “www.gov.ri.gov.”

Blogger Rene Lafayette wrote: "This is a clear violation of partisan, political use of publicly funded resources," in a blog posted on Tuesday, Sept. 11.

Christine Hunsinger, Chafee's spokeswoman, said Thursday the video was made by James Alvarez, who works in the governor's communications office. 

He "volunteered to do it on his own time and used his own computer," Hunsinger said. "He was excited that the governor was giving a speech at the convention."

She said Alvarez was not asked to make a video promoting the speech and that "no state resources went into the making of the video."

Nevertheless, by the end of the day Thursday, the video had been taken down from YouTube.

Hunsigner said was pulled down both because of the blogger's concerns and because Alvarez was going to update it. The title of the video was "Governor Lincoln Chafee to speak before the 2012 Democratic National Convention."

"Since there was some concern expressed by someone we removed it," Hunsinger said. She added the governor's office url would not be included on the updated version.

"The governor is the ambassdor of Rhode Island," Hunsinger said, explaining why the office did not think it was wrong to include the url originally. But, she said, the complaint motivated them to ask that it not be included in the updated video.

A link to the video was included in an email sent out Aug. 30 announcing Chafee's speech. The address used to send the email was private:  chafeednc2012@gmail.com. Hunsinger said it was sent out by the Chafee campaign.

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