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The Ebola virus has reportedly killed 672 people in West Africa, but a consultant for the Tom Corbett for Governor campaign apparently thought the tragedy was fair game for scoring political points.

On Wednesday, at 12:15pm, Vonne Andring, Coalitions Director at the Corbett for Governor campaign sent out a tweet reading, “Ebola epidemic ‘out of control’ say sources. So are @WolfForPA’s and @PAfreshstart’s lies on education funding. #pagov goo.gl/AjbA5k.”

The tweet has since been deleted, but here’s the screen shot:

Vonne Andring tweet 20140730

“Tom Corbett should be ashamed of his staffer’s tweet,” says Krystal Bonner, digital director for the Campaign for a Fresh Start, which supports the Tom Wolf campaign. “Making a comparison to the tragic Ebola outbreak in West Africa is obviously offensive and insensitive. The staffer’s deletion of the tweet highlights how inappropriate it was in the first place.”

For some context regarding those alleged “lies,” the Wolf campaign—and Democrats in general—claim Corbett cut about $1 billion from education funding in Pennsylvania. The Corbett campaign says no, actually, he increased education funding. Both are right, and both are wrong. We’ll save the explanation for a later analysis.

“Vonne Andring does consulting work for the campaign,” says Billy Pitman, press secretary at the Corbett for Governor campaign, by email. “This comment was made from a personal account and is in no way reflective of the views of the campaign. The tweet has since been removed and we apologize.”

Considering the Twitter fights between the PA GOP and PA Dems that’ve gone on thus far this campaign season, don’t expect this to be the final gaffe. But good lord, this is a bad one.

About The Author

Staff writer

Randy LoBasso is the winner of the Pennsylvania Newsmedia Association's 2014 Distinguished Writing Award for his news and politics coverage at Philadelphia Weekly. He has also contributed to Alt Ledes, Salon, The Guardian and PennLive.

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