Mayor of Kiev Vitali Klitschko Hired American Spin Doctors
On 25 October 2015, the elections for the posts of mayors and members of local councils will take place in Ukraine. The current Mayor of Kiev, multiple boxing world champion Vitali Klitschko is now the front-runner in the race. He is being consulted by Sam Patten, a former team mate of American political strategist Paul Manafort. Previously Paul Manafort advised an oligarch Rinat Akhmetov and fugitive ex-president Viktor Yanukovich. While Sam Patten is still maintaining working ties with former president of Ukraine Viktor Yushchenko.
The head of a political consulting agency based in Washington D.C., Sam Patten joined the electoral campaign of mayor of Kiev Vitali Klitschko. Previously Sam Patten had been working in the team of American lobbyist and political consultant Paul Manafort, who advised in Ukraine an oligarch Rinat Akhmetov and later – president Viktor Yanukovich, fled to Russia in February 2014.
Sam Patten is familiar with Ukrainian peculiarities. He also worked with Viktor Yushchenko, the president of Ukraine in 2005-2010.
As reported by KV, on current mayoral election Sam Patten works with the group of Ukrainian spin doctors from the Center of Political Decisions, who consulted several candidates in single-member districts backed by Vitali Klitschko`s Party UDAR (Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform) in the ballot for Kiev City Council in 2014. In ukrainian “udar” means “a punch”.
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Moreover, the Center of Political Decisions engineered the presidential campaign of Oleg Lyashko, who last year was in the sphere of influence of Serhiy Lyovochkin, a former head of Administration of president Viktor Yanukovich and actual leader of the Opposition Bloc party, which became a de facto successor of Viktor Yanukovich`s Party of Regions.
As informed sources said to KV, it was Serhiy Lyovochkin who brought Sam Patten into the team of Vitali Klitschko.
According to Dmytro Firtash, Ukrainian oligarch sued by US justice via Austrian court, Vitali Klitschko became a mayor of Kiev in exchange of quitting the presidential contest in 2014. As explained by Dmytro Firtash in Vienna court, owing to this deal Petro Poroshenko won Ukraine's presidential election in the first round.
Furthermore, as the testimony in Vienna court revealed, the meetings of Poroshenko, Firtash and Klitschko were also attended by Serhiy Lyovochkin.
Sam Patten was introduced to Vitali Klitschko afterwards Klitschko`s relationship with Paul Manafort frayed, said the source of KV.
“Now Paul Manafort is totally engaged in electoral campaign of Opposition Bloc. While Sam Patten and the Center of Political Decisions are dealing with Vitali Klitschko and his team”, assured the source of KV.
According to the source, besides Vitali Klitschko, Sam Patten has working contacts with deputy mayor of Kiev Petro Panteleev, former Klitschko`s deputy Pavlo Ryabikin, as well as chief of staff of Kiev City State Administration Volodymyr Bondarenko and assistant of the secretary of Kiev City Council Andrii Miroshnichenko.
“Sam Patten is close to the family of former president Viktor Yushchenko and is on good terms with his wife Kateryna”, added the source of KV.
Besides of that, Patten has an experience in working with Mikheil Saakashvili and Russian opposition. Particularly he gets along well with deputy of State Duma Ilya Ponomarev. Now Ponomarev is hiding from Russian court in the US, and even organized an anti-Putin rally in New York city, on 28 September.
In the PR team of Vitali Klitschko Sam Patten is responsible for sociology, focus groups, and defines the campaign strategy jointly with the Center of Political Decisions.
According to KV, the main goal of the US-Ukrainian political advisors group is to bring Vitali Klitschko to the runoff, followed by former mayor of Ukrainian capital Oleksandr Omelchenko.
Oleksandr Omelchenko lost mayoral election to Leonid Chernovetskyi in 2006, and since then doesn`t give up hope to regain a position of Ukraine`s capital town governor.
Based upon closed poll numbers from Vitali Klitschko`s headquarter, recently published in “Ukrainska Pravda”, Sam Patten and the Center of Political Decisions are coping with the task.
As of the end of September, Vitali Klitschko leads with 32,4% of votes. His next rival is Oleksandr Omelchenko with 13,2%.
Omelchenko is followed by the dark-horse candidate of current Kiev mayoral election, deputy of Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Boryslav Bereza (12%)
By Yegor Shylbaum