A blog post recently put up adds to the strangeness and odd nature that is the Scott Pullins experience.

Here are some of the facts: Scott is bald and advertises for Gay Adoption on his blog.

Now let me be clear here. I don’t have anything against gays or bald guys. Hell, I was bald once…the shaven type. I’ll probably adopt that look again. With shades you look like a real bad ass, but I’m getting off topic here…

What these facts will do, however, is continue to stir up the whispers that have been going around for some time now questioning Scott’s sexual orientation.

The stories I’ve been hearing imply that Scott is gay and has even been seen going into a bar with another person who was of a male persuasion. Or so the rumors say.

Can there be any truth to these rumors? It is very hard for me personally to say. I have no direct knowledge of it and only hear what I hear. But having an ad for gay adoption on his blog while masquerading as a conservative blogger will surely only continue to feed these nasty whispers about the bizarre sex life of Scott Pullins.

It is almost weird in a way, then, to see him accuse others of the same thing. Hmmm….

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  • Yes, I was wondering about that too. Things that make you go hmmmm… 😉

  • Pho

    Mind you, it doesn’t make any difference to me what Pullins does. But other people care, so it’s vitally important that we discuss every rumor. Calmly, rationally and without namecalling, of course.

  • Reports have circulated that Gary Lankford, who was fired by the Ohio Republican Party for an e-mail suggesting Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ted Strickland and his wife were gay, based that e-mail on a posting made in a blog by Scott Pullins, President of the Ohio Taxpayers Association. For this reason, Blogger has been notified of Pullins’ blog containing objectionable content.

    It’s time that Scott Pullins be swift-boated, and it can be done very easily by making the connection between Pullins and the 2004 suicide of a Columbus city worker and Army Veteran named Brandon Ratliff.

    The following is from a posting in Ratliff’s memory:

    Lt. Brandon Ratliff

    He commanded the Army Reserve’s 909th Forward Surgical Team in Afghanistan. The unit he commanded provides medical care on the front lines, and Ratliff’s duties included retrieving wounded soldiers from the battlefield and tallying the dead and wounded. Ratliff spent nine months in Afghanistan organizing the medical unit and, when he had to, picking up and carrying soldiers broken by helicopter crashes and land mines. He did his duty. He was decorated eight times. Upon returning home from the war, Ratliff was denied the promotion and pay raise he was promised by his employer before he was deployed. Depressed from his experiences on active duty, hopelessness set in, and on Thursday, March 18, 2004, Lt. Ratliff committed suicide.

    Lt. Ratliff graduated from Groveport Madison High School in 1992 and received a Bachelors Degree in Health Administration from Franklin University in 2000. He was an employee of the Columbus Department of Health as a STD Intervention Specialist. He was committed to helping people and was a highly respected and greatly loved member of his family, community, and country. He is beloved and survived by his mother, father, stepfather, grandmother, uncles and aunts, many other family members; best friend, and countless other friends, comrades, and co-workers.

    Lieutenant Brandon Ratliff

    “I am sorry they failed you, Mom”
    02 April 2004


    31 Mar 2004

    Lt. Brandon Ratliff

    “A great friend and a selfless person. May you find peace and know how much we all miss you.”
    03 April 2004

    Dear Friends, Not to get political on ya’ll, but please, if you are fortunate enough to have a veteran in your life, take a minute to let them know how much you love and appreciate them.

    I am saddened and ashamed to tell about my friend, co-worker, and American hero, Brandon Ratliff, who gave until he had no more left to give.

    In civilian life he served the poor in the local health department and in the military, he carried a stretcher around the Afghan hills sometimes only retrieving pieces of comrades.

    He was decorated 8 times in 9 months. He had only been back home 5 months before taking his life. He was 31, a college grad, charming and a real magnet to the opposite sex.

    He was a human that I could look to for inspiration, knowing I could never rise to his level, but always being inspired by his example.

    It took his tragic passing for me to understand what it means when it is said, “some gave all.” Thank a veteran for serving our country. Please let the reception the veterans of Vietnam received be a lesson to us now. God bless and keep you all. Thank you for letting me share this with you. – Scott
    04 April 2004

    In a report issued by Mayor Michael Coleman on April 22, 2004, the City of Columbus noted what could have been done on its part to prevent Lieutenant Ratliff’s suicide.

    However, I have always placed full responsibility for Ratliff’s death on Scott Pullins.

    And it all stems from his involvement in a misleading ad campaign opposing a $4-a-day tax on car rentals in Columbus, which was on the November 2002 ballot as Issue 18. The article from Business First spells it all out:

    Anti-rental tax ads begin airing
    October 23, 2002
    by Tony Goins
    Business First

    The Ohio Taxpayers Association has unveiled television and radio ads to fight Issue 18, a car rental tax that will be on the Nov. 5 ballot in Columbus.

    The association is spending $35,000 on radio ads and $60,000 on TV ads. A single ad has been created for each medium.

    The ads urge taxpayers to vote down a $4-a-day tax on car rentals within the city of Columbus. Columbus City Council approved the tax in June, but the OTA and a consortium of car rental companies successfully fought to have the issue put on the ballot.

    A “yes” vote for Issue 18 will approve the tax. A “no” vote will prevent it from being enacted.

    The ads have a “hard-hitting anti-tax message,” said OTA Chairman Scott Pullins.

    In a press release, the pro-Issue 18 campaign, Citizens for Columbus Neighborhoods, called the ads “misleading.”

    “They obviously weren’t concerned with reality when they wrote these commercials, because every statement is off base with the issue on the ballot,” said campaign coordinator Todd Dieffenderfer in the release. “We are very interested in seeing how they are funding this attack campaign.”

    Pro-Issue 18 campaigners have already aired one TV ad in support of the tax and plan to air another, said campaign member Peggy McElroy, a longtime community activist. McElroy said tax supporters plan to distribute campaign literature and make door-to-door appeals to win voter support for the tax, designed to help the city of Columbus overcome a budget crunch.

    The association’s TV ads, which began airing Wednesday on WBNS-TV, the Pax television network and cable channels, will run 90 times on 32 Wide Open West channels, and 90 times on 22 stations on the Time Warner and Insight cable systems. The association targeted the cable networks voters are likely to watch, including CNN, A&E and the History Channel.

    “If you watch anything on cable this week, you’ll see it.” Pullins said.

    The association has also purchased seven days of advertising on local Clear Channel radio stations, Pullins said, including WTVN-AM and WNCI-FM and WMNI-AM.

    The radio ad will air most often on WTVN, about 60 times over seven days.


    And as J. Caleb Mozzocco reported in Columbus Alive:

    On paper, Issue 18 looked like a sure thing. The cash-strapped city could raise at least $6 million a year by taxing residents of other cities, who would be paying a new $4 a day tax on car rentals when they visited Columbus. It?s the kind of tax already paid by visitors to dozens of other big cities.

    Who wouldn?t vote to raise some other poor schmuck?s taxes to keep your own taxes low and your city services intact?

    Apparently, 62 percent of Columbus voters. The issue was crushed at the polls last week.

    But why on earth would anyone in Columbus?other than maybe the rental car industry?cast a ?no? vote? Behold the power of advertising.

    Scott Pullins of the Ohio Taxpayers Association successfully led an ad campaign which all but bludgeoned voters into voting no on 18. You remember the ads?some of the most alarmist and vague of the campaign season. Really, they were almost funny.

    Like the TV spot that said Issue 18 would cost local jobs and Columbus taxpayers $12 million a year, as choruses of ?Vote no on Issue 18? splashed across the screen. Or the radio ads that call it ?a painful new tax on hard-working Columbus residents? that ?will not help pay for fire and police departments.? Or the fliers jammed under your windshield wipers, which prominently featured a photo of Mayor Michael Coleman next to the ?Issue #18 is Opposed By? heading without explanation (Coleman was, of course, the strongest advocate of the tax).

    None of the ads ever got around to explaining what the heck the issue was. It was clear it was evil, but the fact that it was a tax on rental cars?which, according to the city and the ballot language, exempted most local users?never came up.

    Pullins is unapologetic about the ads, and why not? ?It wasn?t up to me to run the mayor?s campaign for him,? he said. ?The burden was on them.?

    ?Frankly, we didn?t have enough money to get into all [the details],? Pullins continued. But couldn?t they even have mentioned that the ?new tax? was a car-rental tax? ?We had to make it as simple as possible. We were on the ?no? side; our purpose was to defeat the issue. To explain the issue is up to the ?yes? side. Our job was to convince [the voters] to vote no.?

    That they did, and Pullins calls the issue?s defeat ?a huge victory for Columbus taxpayers.?

    But at what price, Scott Pullins? The life of an Army veteran who served our country and was affected greatly by the war that he would end up killing himself after learning the promotion he was promised wasn’t there any more–thanks to your misleading the voters of Columbus?

    The fallout of the campaign is reflected in the report from the City of Columbus following Ratlifff’s suicide:
    As a result of significant revenue shortfalls, a number of City Departments were required to submit revised projections for the FY2002 budget. These projections further reduced cuts already made in many program areas necessitating, in some cases, the elimination of programs in their entirety.

    The factors considered by the Health Commissioner and her team in deciding where additional cuts would be made included:

    1) Whether the services were required by law
    2) Are they fully funded by a revenue source
    3) Are there other providers of the service in the community
    4) Is there a critical need in the community for the service
    5) Is the service part of the department’s core mission

    Based on these factors, in January 2003, funding for the Enviromental Community Partnerships programs was eliminated. This resulted in the elimination of two full-time positions, a Program Manager II and a Health Education Program Planner.

    In January of 2003, the employee encumbering the HEPP position in the eliminated program was moved to the HEPP position that Lt. Ratliff was to have filled.

    And all of this took place while Lt. Ratliff was fighting in Afghanistan.


    Some bloggers may have names for Scott Pullins following the Strickland flap. But I feel facts go a lot further than simple name-calling.

    Scott Pullins has a reputation for being litigious. Which is why it helps to have a journalism degree from Kent State, where I attended classes and worked on the Daily Kent Stater with Columbus Dispatch reporter Mark Ferenchik, who covered the Ratliff story.

    However, unlike Mark, I am not a professional journalist. I am a private citizen, currently employed with the state’s top law enforcement agency. Many of my co-workers with the Ohio Department of Public Safety have been on the front lines in the War on Terror, just like Lt. Ratliff. Scott Pullins, on the other hand, is a public figure interviewed frequently by the news media. Any legal maneuver he would try to silence me is only going to lead to his accelerated demise from Ohio politics.

    But I am willing to stick my neck out on behalf of Brandon Ratliff’s family and friends, as well as my fellow citizens in Columbus and statewide, to expedite Scott Pullins’ fall from the political arena. Brandon is owed at least that much.

  • Susan Coats

    I am Lt. Brandon’s mother. He was my only child and I’m fighting for justice for Brandon. We worked in the same building. I have worked in the H.R. office for 18 years and I know what they did to him, I was there. My manager in H.R. who had been fired from his last 2 previous jobs took Brandon’s promotion away along with his previous job so he had nothing to come back to. I showed my manager the USERRA Law protecting Vets but because I am a woman and smarter then him, he disregarded them and made Brandon suffer. I am suing them and now they are in the process of trying to fire me in retaliation. I am standing firm and will not stop till those responsible are held accountable. I have had my heart ripped out and I miss Brandon so much that everyday, every breath is a struggle. There is nothing worse that can happen to me, nothing, so I will fight them with all the strength that my love for Brandon has given me. May he rest in peace and know his fight goes on through me and I will win.

  • Sally Hellmann

    I am Susan’s sister, and Brandon’s aunt, and I am standing beside them every step of the way. We will not stop until there is justice for Brandon. It has been two years since his death, and the pain is as raw as if it happened yesterday. There is never a relief from it, and we will likewise, give his cause no relief. God has Brandon now, and He will sustain us.

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