A former campaign staffer for Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Sarasota, has just been named the executive director of the Republican Party of Sarasota County.

In a press release sent out yesterday, former Buchanan campaign staffer Joe Gruters announced the appointment of fellow Buchanan campaign veteran Christian Ziegler, saying that Ziegler would “play an essential role implementing our Victory 2012 Plan and sending Barack Obama back to Chicago.”

“Since I first hired Christian during Congressman Buchanan’s 2006 campaign, he has been one of the most successful communications and congressional staffers in the nation,” Gruters said in the release. “He has a bright, incisive and engaging political mind and it will be energizing to work with him again. As a driving force in a battleground county, in the largest swing state in the country, Christian will help deliver the votes needed for the GOP Presidential nominee to win Sarasota County, Florida and the White House.”

Ziegler had worked as a legislative assistant and director of new media in the Capitol Hill and district offices of Buchanan. He also worked on Buchanan’s 2006, 2008 and 2010 congressional campaigns — two of which have become controversial. A former business partner of Buchanan’s was recently fined nearly $68,000 over campaign donations made to the congressman’s 2006 and 2008 campaigns. Sam Kazran, who once owned several car dealerships with Buchanan, admitted to reimbursing employees who donated to the campaigns, but has said he did so because Buchanan told him to.

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