Hyneman upset over controversial Bunker campaign ad - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Hyneman upset over controversial Bunker campaign ad

Memphis developer Rusty Hyneman is considering taking legal action against a candidate for office because of the way he's depicted in this campaign ad. Memphis developer Rusty Hyneman is considering taking legal action against a candidate for office because of the way he's depicted in this campaign ad.

The fight over a controversial campaign flier could end up in court.

Memphis developer Rusty Hyneman is considering taking legal action against a candidate for office because of the way he's depicted in a new campaign ad.

Wyatt Bunker is making no apologies for the controversial campaign flyer he sent to voters.

"You have a notorious developer here, who is known for having a lot of influence in the county commission and you have elected officials on cards.  Their faces are printed there and it shows him playing a card," he says, pointing to the flyer.

But the notorious developer, Rusty Hyneman, isn't playing.  In fact, his lawyer, Allan Wade, says Bunker may have given Hyneman the upper hand.

"Why is he the target of a political campaign?  I mean he's not running for office," says Wade.

Wade says Hyneman may sue Bunker for defamation.

Bunker - currently a county school board member - is running for County Commission, for a seat held now by Tom Moss.  Moss is featured on the campaign cartoon as well.

Bunker says the cartoon is based on published reports.  "In the Commercial Appeal, they have Hyneman... A friend indeed to officials.  In that same article, it appoints out my opponent, homebuilder turned commissioner, Tom Moss, rented a home from Hyneman when he needed to establish residency in a new district," he says.

"Mr. Hyneman is not running for office," says Wade.  "He is not an opponent of Mr. Bunker so the implication that he holds all these people in the palm of his hand is also defamatory to Mr. Hyneman but to the politicians that are pictured here."

But Hyneman, he says, is a private businessman.  He says scrutinizing Hyneman's public contracts is one thing, but publicly criticizing his character is another.

Bunker says he's not worried.  "I don't think you can make anything out of it.  That's my opinion.  They have their own.  We'll cross that bridge when we come to it."

We spoke with the other two candidates in Bunker's race, Jim Bomprezzi and Tom Moss.  Neither would comment for this story. 

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