Grant Alumni President Retracts Endorsement

Johnnie Matranga
Grant Alumni Association, President

NORTH SACRAMENTO – Jonnie Matranga, the president of Grant Union High School Alumni Association, issued a statement last week citing a “troubling and misleading” flier distributed by Rob Kerth’s campaign.

On the back side of a flier paid for by “Rob Kerth for City Council 2012” the Grant Alumni Association’s president is listed as “proudly” endorsing Kerth. Kerth is in a runoff for City Council District 2 against candidate Allen Warren.

Matranga released a statement on Thursday, Oct. 11, disavowing the “Grant Alumni Association” endorsement on the flier, which also lists five other supporters. Matranga wrote that the Grant Union High School Alumni Association does not partake in political matters or back candidates of any kind.

“I find this very troubling and misleading since the Grant Alumni Association is, by charter, non-political and does not endorse any candidate for public office,” Matranga stated in the press release.

“I feel that this endorsement citing the Grant Alumni Association’s name for political purposes had compromised me and the Association and was used as such without my knowledge or permission,” he added.

When interviewed by The OBSERVER, Kerth said Matranga did, in fact, endorse his candidacy in the primary and general election, but decided to drop his name after the “political outcry,” Kerth said. The usage of his name and tying it to the Grant Union Alumni Association made it a conflict for Matranga, Kerth explained.

“The Grant Alumni Association is a non-profit and shouldn’t be doing those type of things,” Kerth told The OBSERVER.

“We only used Jonnie’s name for identification purposes. But I understand he changed his mind because of the political outcry. He just thought it was best that he not do it,” he added.

_____

By Antonio R. Harvey

OBSERVER STAFF WRITER