Union-Backed School Board Candidate Called Out for Doctoring Audio

September 21, 2013
Union-backed candidate Ronda Scholting spliced audio from the Mike Rosen show to manufacture a soundbyte she then attributed to her opponent

Union-backed school board candidate Ronda Scholting spliced together segments of audio to manufacture a soundbyte she then attributed to her opponent

DENVER – If AFL-CIO-backed candidate Rhonda Scholting loses to Meghann Silverthorn on November 5 in school board elections, she might have a future peddling embellished news stories for her old bosses at KMBC in Kansas City.

In a one-minute and thirty-two second video posted on her Facebook page, Scholting alleges that Silverthorn doesn’t “think much about the moms, dads, grandparents or taxpayers here in Douglas County.”

Scholting’s video then transitions into an audio snippet purporting to be from Silverthorn – audio Scholting presents as proof that Silverthorn thinks district residents are “just uninformed soccer moms who really don’t know the issues.”

There’s just one problem with union-endorsed Scholting’s campaign video: She deleted nearly two minutes of the KOA 850 interview to splice together the misleading sound byte she attributes to her opponent.

Within hours, someone posted a YouTube rebuttal video, calling Scholting’s misleading ad a sham.

The response video, titled “Rhonda Whips Up a Whopper,” displays in step-by-step fashion, how Scholting and her campaign consultants could have deleted audio where necessary to create the doctored audio.

One-minute and forty-six seconds of audio was removed in various places to create the eight-second sound byte.

The full, undoctored audio of the Rosen segment reveals that Silverthorn’s words were taken from later in the interview, and spliced together with a question from Rosen (which was directed to both Silverthorn and Judi Reynolds).  Doug Benevento was also in attendance for the segment.

“Ronda Scholting is not only a School Board candidate, but her years in the media have made her a skilled audio manipulator,” reads the intro to the rebuttal spot  — a reference to Scholting’s previous work as a news reporter.

“If Ronda is willing to lie and manipulate audio to create a soundbite, what will stop her from lying and manipulating information as a School Board Member?” the video asks.

Silverthorn sounded a similar tone in an e-mail to The Observer.

“It’s unfortunate that, as a broadcast professional, [Scholting] chose to edit both my comments and Mr. Rosen’s comments and splice them together to create a whole different meaning than the original intent,” Silverthorn told The Observer in an e-mail.  “This event has caused me to question [Scholting's] integrity: if she is willing to go to those lengths to deceive our community, how can we trust her with our kids’ education?”

Scholting did not respond to a request for comment.

The rebuttal video is embedded below.

Comments made by visitors are not representative of The Colorado Observer staff.

10 Responses to Union-Backed School Board Candidate Called Out for Doctoring Audio

  1. Joe Grigg
    September 22, 2013 at 1:17 pm


  2. Bob Rotruck
    September 22, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    Some of the finest audio manipulation I’ve seen in years. Maybe she should get a job with the NSA!!!!

  3. Bob Terry
    September 23, 2013 at 8:29 am

    There is no shame here on her part or the teachers union and the democrats who back her . I don’t think the citizens of Douglas County, really want Chicago style politics and results that are shown here .. This woman is a hack..and is most likely backed with outside monies as well…

  4. wrongheifer
    September 23, 2013 at 12:13 pm

    We know the difference… We are informed… You will not be able to lie your way through this one! Capiche?

  5. Kelly Anderson
    October 20, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    This woman came to my door and out and out lied to me. She stated that realtors are telling people not to buy houses in Douglas County because the schools are bad…that Cherry Creek was better. She also said that property values will go down because of the school district. What she didn’t know is that my husband is a realtor and my sister is a Douglas County teacher.

    I don’t have children in school, so I didn’t want to spend time at my door speaking to her, but when she started spewing out misinformation, I became furious. Although I normally don’t pay a lot of attention to school board issues, I have done some asking around and paying more attention this time to teacher friends and other people in the know.

    If things are so bad, why are 2 of the schools in Ms. Scholtings district (Parker) recently listed on Newsweeks top high schools (and 6 schools in Douglas County?) My teacher friends think things are going well and some of the teachers that are leaving because of the school board issues were the “dead wood” that needed to leave. Our housing prices in my neighborhood are up 15% in the last year. My friends with kids in Douglas County schools are happy with their children’s education and think that it is a small group that is just out to make trouble. A group of realtors met with Douglas County schools and their report was that they are impressed with how progressive Douglas County schools are.

    Now I see that this woman has doctored video. Sad to see someone that is so desperate that she has to go out and lie.


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