Fortunately, it's looking like Romney and his campaign have been all but cleared of any charges or speculation in the matter.
However, a fake email (made public by Cyclone Conservatives blog--make sure to vote for Romney in his poll on the right sidebar there too) has been sent out far and wide where an impostor claims to be "Team Romney Iowa" and apologizes for push-polling themselves to get votes and sympathy (hat tip to Justin Hart at My Man Mitt for alerting me to it)
Some of the more audacious claims:
Dear Supporters,They finish with:
As most of you probably read in today's National Review , our campaign has been tied to the anti-Mormom calls made here in Iowa attacking Gov. Romney for his faith. It appears our campaign's chief strategist, who we have paid nearly $800,000 in fees, is behind the calls.
Our office has been swarmed with hundreds of phone calls since the National Review, the most respected national conservative publication, broke the story. Many Iowans are upset that our own campaign would smear our own candidate and Mormons and try to tie it to another campaign.
Because we were not able to answer all your phone calls, we'd like to issue a sincere apology. Our campaign believes that we must say and do anything to win -- which sometimes gets us into trouble.
They then go on to list negative and misleading reports of "wrongdoing" by campaign staffers etc . . .
While we do not have the time to explain each and every of these offenses, including the newest one, we can assure you, our valued supporters, that the Team Romney campaign is 100% committed to saying anything and using any campaign tactics to win.OK . . . so it's pretty obvious that this wasn't even trying to pass as a credible "from the real Romney campaign" email. But what is obvious is that some people are anonymously and deceptively trying to malign the character and campaign efforts of Governor Romney. This kind of attack is probably coming from another GOP campaign. That "Say or Do Anything" phraseology is vintage McCain stuff (Remember the anti-Romney site he purchased who's banner read "Say. Do. Anything"?) However, recently Fred Thompson's spokesman used the same terminology for Gov. Romney. Even the DNC has made similar claims as well. I don't know who did it though I have some suspicions that I'll keep to myself (at the wise recommendation of our first commenter). Whoever did it is cowardly and shameless.
It actually shouldn't be too hard to track where the e-mails came from (I personally don't have a clue how . . . but have been told it's not too difficult). Most likely it's from someone who's covered their tracks well and/or used a public computer/WiFi. This kind of behavior cannot be condoned. The stakes are very high in a race like this and such actions should be punished.
It's getting really ugly really quickly folks.