Brian May, the political advisor and volunteer staffer who sent Democrat Alex Sink the text message during her debate last night and ignited a firestorm over her campaign, told the Miami Herald Tuesday that he takes responsibility for the mistake and never intended to break the rules.
"What I was trying to do was not a violation of the rules but what occurred was a violation,'' he said in an interview. "I sent a message to the hair stylist to say something to her, not to show it to her. The bottom line is that the person responsible for this is me, not Alex Sink, and to say otherwise is a fabrication of what occurred."
May, a Tallahassee lobbyist and long-time Democratic operative, served as one of Sink's debate coaches and signed the agreement between Sink and Republican rival Rick Scott. The agreement required that the candidates would not have opening or closing statements and would not use note or props. He said the context of the text never came up again in the debate so she gained no advantage from it.
"The whole idea that Alex Sink cheated is false,'' May said. "She didn’t know that text message was coming. It is absolutely absurd and ridiculous to say Alex Sink cheated during the debate. If you watched the tape, you can see clearly she was surprised that the hair stylist put a text message before her. To say otherwise is a distortion.
"I regret what happened but I respect Alex Sink for holding me accountable for it. It’s painful for me to leave the campaign but she has again shown the character and integrity that will make her a good governor."
May said he acted out of impulse after watching Scott’s attacks. “After watching him impugn her integrity and distort her record as a successful business woman with a reputation of integrity, the bottom line is, the moment got the better of me and I felt compelled to send that message.”