David Trone Blasted 2018 Campaign Staff Over Scheduling Mishap

In June 2018, David Trone’s congressional campaign staffers leaked an email to A Miner Detail that revealed their boss’ ire directed at his campaign staff over a scheduling mishap surrounding the annual Montgomery County Minority Legislative Breakfast.

Mr. Trone, the co-founder of Total Wine & More, fired off an email to his senior staff on Dec. 11, 2017.

He tore into his staff for their recommendation that his wife, June Trone, attend the annual Montgomery County Minority Legislative Breakfast with him.

“On Friday, my wife attended the Legislative Minority Breakfast with me. What level of net positive her presence added is not the reason for this memo Anywhere she goes or I go there is some net positive that comes out of that.”

Trone said that he saw that his staff had signed up his wife for breakfast, but he decided it was a waste of her time to be in attendance at the early morning gathering.

He thought the event was a waste of time for his wife to attend.

Grace Rivera-Oven, Trone’s former campaign policy director, apparently convinced June Trone that her presence at the breakfast was needed.

“Grace explained to her Thursday that she should attend and that she is needed and therefore she got up at 6:00 a.m. with me, went to the breakfast against my direct request to you guys,” Trone wrote in his email.

He said that while his wife could have stayed home that morning, he “allowed” her to come with him.

“While I certainly could have left her home, I allowed her to go, given you felt so strongly about it.”

Rivera-Oven, now an elected Montgomery County Board of Education member, resigned earlier in the year from her role with David Trone’s 2018 congressional campaign.

Unconcerned about whether Mrs. Trone’s presence at breakfast added value to his campaign, Trone was decidedly more perturbed by his staff’s apparent insubordination. He emphasized in no uncertain terms that he was the boss and that his staff must follow his orders.

“The way it has to work in life is if the boss says we are not doing something, we don’t do it. ”

Trone told his staff that if they disagree, they should contact him, explain their disagreements, and maybe he’ll change his mind—but defying him is a non-starter in his campaign’s chain of command.

“If you disagree, that is great, contact the boss, tell him your reasons, and I am happy to change my mind, but it is passive-aggressive, it is wrong, it is insubordinate for you to do whatever you want, and even more so when it comes to someone who is my life,” Trone scolded.

Berating his staff further, Trone wrote, “It isn’t rocket science.”

“Maybe you guys can use a little common sense and courtesy and decency and good communication skills.”

Near the end of his email, Trone wrote that his “time is super valuable” and that his campaign has to do events “that are truly value-added” and worth his time.

Directing his staff to stay within their respective lanes, Trone assigned staffers to reach out to specific groups and minority communities.

He appointed Rivera-Oven to contact “Latinos, Asians, and Women.”

“Grace, your position is if it is a Latino event, it is important, and we must be there.”

Trone wrote that Latinos are four percent of the vote in Maryland’s 6th Congressional District.

Trone concluded his email, “I would rather have Grace be 100% responsible for Asian and Jessy [Mejia], 100% responsible for African-American [sic] in Montgomery and Frederick Counties.”

“If someone has a better idea, we will talk about it. You don’t just do it behind my back,” Trone wrote.

Trone’s email is below.

David Trone blasts campaign staff over scheduling mishap

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