Quayle’s ties to ‘The Dirty’ founder began in 2005
Published: August 12, 2010 at 1:11 pm
Ben Quayle now admits that in 2007 he used a pseudonym to contribute to the voyeuristic website, DirtyScottsdale.com, which later became TheDirty.com, after first denying any affiliation with the site.
Gordon James, who is working for the Quayle campaign, said Quayle contributed to the site under a pseudonym. James would not say which pseudonym Quayle used, but did not rule out that Quayle had contributed to the site under the name “Brock Landers,” a fictional porn star in the movie Boogie Nights.
James said Quayle would not answer questions regarding further affiliation with the site. James said Quayle doesn’t remember which pseudonym he used.
Quayle, a Republican candidate in Arizona’s 3rd Congressional District, initially denied having ties to the site or its founder, Hooman Karamian, but later admitted to helping Karamian start the site and to posting comments on it.
Now, several days after the story was first reported by Politico, James said Quayle’s involvement was more than just posting comments; he was a contributing writer.
Quayle’s ties to the founder of the site go back more than five years when the two were introduced during a celebrity golf tournament at a country club in Lake Tahoe, Nev.
The former Vice President’s son-turned-congressional candidate said initially that he could not remember how or where the two met, although James confirmed today (Aug. 12) that Quayle attended the golf tournament in Lake Tahoe and met Karamian there.
Karamian said he remembers the night well.
Karamian’s ex-wife, Amanda Toney, also confirmed the pair’s first encounter at the swanky Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course on July 15, 2005 – two years before TheDirty.com’s predecessor, DirtyScottsdale.com, was launched.
Toney worked on the public-relations effort for The American Century Championship Players Tournament and had built rapport with many of the celebrities there, including Dan Quayle and his then-28-year-old son, Ben.
At the opening night party on July 15, Toney introduced Quayle and Karamian, who immediately hit it off. Karamian said Toney, who had spent the entire day working, turned in for the evening, leaving him and Quayle to stay up late and mingle among the crowd of celebrities and women.
“There were chicks all over the place, trying to hook up with celebrities,” Karamian said. “We moseyed around the bar and casino tables, just making fun of chicks.”
Karamian, who made a comment on his website about a “crazy hooker” in Tahoe said he was referring to that night, but said he was only talking about a woman that he and Quayle had assumed was a prostitute and on drugs.
“I said (on TheDirty.com), ‘Hey, do you remember that crazy hooker?’ because we saw some hooker who was acting crazy,” Karamian told the Arizona Capitol Times. “I wasn’t implying that he had sex with a hooker at all.”
Karamian said he and Quayle remained friends after that first weekend meeting, and that they would often spend late nights out in the Scottsdale club scene.
“It was the Scottsdale heyday,” Karamian said. “We partied until five or six in the morning some nights. The guy can hang.”
James said Quayle is not willing to confirm or contest Karamian’s account of their relationship.
When Ben Quayle’s association with The Dirty was first put forth by Karamian, Quayle flatly denied having any hand in it, calling it a smear campaign orchestrated by political rivals.
He has since backpedaled from that statement, saying that he introduced Karamian to an intellectual property attorney around the time the site was started, and that he posted a few comments on the site.
“I made a couple of comments about the Scottsdale nightlife four years ago to try to help drive traffic, and that’s it. (I posted them) on the website that doesn’t exist anymore,” Quayle said, referring to dirtyscottsdale.com. “That website doesn’t exist anymore. It was a different website, different content and different focus.”
But Karamian said that more than just commenting on the site, Quayle was one its pseudonymous writers, “Brock Landers,” a claim that Quayle initially said was untrue.
“I am not Brock Landers,” Quayle said on Aug. 10.
Karamian said flatly that Quayle was “Brock Landers,” and that although he thinks very highly of Quayle, he should admit that he was behind the “Brock’s Chick” column.
“I still remember, when we started the site, we were standing in the kitchen and he said, ‘What am I supposed to write about?’” Karamian said. “I said he should write about trying to find the hottest chick in Scottsdale. I said, ‘You use your fake name, and I’ll use mine.’ He is Brock Landers.”
Karamian said that when Quayle later got cold feet about being associated with the site, Karamian put up no objection. “I said, ‘No big deal. We’re friends. I understand,’” Karamian said.
Karamian said in a post on his website that he has no affiliation with any of Quayle’s rivals in the crowded CD-3 Republican primary.
Toney said she still considers Quayle a good guy, and a qualified candidate.
“I was proud when I heard he was running for office,” Toney said.
Karamian echoed Toney’s statements, and said he wishes Quayle would simply admit to writing for the website rather than having to play what Karamian called the “politics game.”
“Look, Ben’s a great guy. He listens to people, he does all that,” Karamian said. “But he’s shooting himself in the foot right now.”
James said that Quayle’s earlier denial of an affiliation with Karamian’s had only to do with TheDirty.com, not its predecessor, DirtyScottsdale.com, so he does not consider this a change to the original denial.
James said Karamian’s revelations stemmed from a motivation to drive traffic to his website.
“I just think he’s never had so much traffic to his website,” James said. “The longer he keeps this going, the more people will visit his site.”
Click here to read posts that Karamian says were written by Quayle.