The fight between tea party candidate Mark Fisher and the Massachusetts Republican Party is escalating with accusations of attempted bribery. Fisher is suing the party for conspiring, he says, to keep him off the primary ballot.
Earlier this week, the party painted Fisher as money grubbing, saying he asked for 1 million dollars in exchange for dropping out of the race. But Fisher on Thursday said the party approached him as early as December and offered him $1 million to go away.
“My first reaction was this is a bribe,” Fisher said. ” This is illegal. This can’t be done.”
He said a state committee member called him and referred him to someone higher up in the party who made the offer. Fisher refused to identify those people, he says, on orders from his lawyer.
When asked by a reporter why the party would offer to pay 1 million dollars to an unknown candidate, Fisher said, “I’m not a political guy. I’m a political outsider. I’m not part of the political establishment.”
Lou Ciavarra, the attorney for the Republican party, said to the best of his knowledge no one approached Fisher in December.
“My research my due diligence in this so far there’s absolutely no basis for that,” Ciavarra said Thursday. “I understand Mr Fisher has not provided any factual support for it on the claim there’s a gag order, which is non existent.”
Fisher said the Republican Party conspired against him at the convention by pressuring delegates to vote for establishment favorite Charlie Baker and using tricky math to count votes.
Fisher said the tally sheets from the convention will show criminal activity. He said he will not drop his lawsuit until they are released, he is allowed on the ballot and he gets $100,000 in damages.
Without offering specifics, the Mass GOP’s lawyer says – as with all litigation – the party is willing to consider any reasonable offer.