After spending months denouncing COVID-19 precautions and criticizing Dr Anthony Fauci, a Republican Party official in Florida died this week – leaving his county-level GOP organization without access to critical financial accounts.

Gregg Prentice, 61, was an accountant for the Hillsborough County GOP and also chaired the organization’s committee for electoral integrity. A software engineer by training, the local Tampa Bay Patch outlet said it built and maintained the local Republican Party’s campaign finance software last year and was responsible for filing its monthly reports to the Federal Election Commission.

An FEC file from surviving members of the organization claims that Prentice passed away without sharing the login details for these accounts, nor any sort of instructions on how to use them. The letter also tells the regulatory agency that it will likely need more time to report on its August fundraising figures, and portends difficulties in compiling local party finances for the months. also to come.

As a political party committee, we file our FEC reports on a monthly basis. For several years we have been submitting reports electronically, and for over a year we have done so with software developed by one of our members, Gregg Prentice. Gregg’s software converted the data from our Quickbooks accounting software to provide the necessary information to the FEC.

Unfortunately, Gregg passed away suddenly from Covid 19 on Saturday, September 11, 2021. Gregg has not shared the software and instructions for its use with our agents. We will need to enter the data for August manually, and based on the information we have received from our FEC analyst Scott Bennett, we will likely need to re-enter data from our first 7 months of 2021. We will be struggling to get all of this entered. in the correct format by our September 20 deadline, but we’ll try to do our best.

In addition to his role in compiling Hillsborough County GOP financial data, Prentice has spent most of the past year spreading fear over COVID-19 vaccines, mask warrants and other measures security in the event of a pandemic. Like many other conservatives in public life, he specifically targeted White House COVID-19 adviser Dr.Anthony Fauci, writing on Facebook that America needed to “end falconry.” He also argued that “we need more socialist distancing than social distancing”.

Prentice’s death also opened a storm of conspiracy theories from other local Republican Party officials, including one who called COVID-19 a “medically modified virus” and suggested – without evidence – that his death was the result. wrongdoing on behalf of the hospital he was being treated at.

Jason Kimball, another Hillsborough County GOP member and close friend of Prentice, even suggested that Tampa General Hospital was performing intubations illegally, Patch reported. Kimball, whose LinkedIn profile says he is a pharmacy technician at a local Walmart, called the procedure a “high-fatality protocol” in comments to Tampa City Council.

Want a daily rundown of all the news and commentary Salon has to offer? Subscribe to our morning newsletter, Crash Course.

“Emergency and intensive care physicians are criminals and murderers,” Kimball wrote on Facebook. “They intubate everyone and put them on a ventilator for no reason, just ‘as a precaution’ as the doctor told me – without family consent. Tampa General Hospital is evil.”

At least one council member interrupted his remarks to expose the plots.

“I rarely respond to people’s comments, but this one, I think, is extremely dangerous,” said John Dingfelder. “I think it’s a dangerous comment to spread to this community, telling people they shouldn’t go to Tampa General Hospital.”

“It was a very dangerous comment from that person. People listen to ridiculous comments without doing the right research.”