A resident of Ohio is filing a suit against her former employer for wrongful termination based on her political beliefs. The female employee claims voting for Obama is what has brought on her dismissal.Patricia Kunkle of Kettering has addressed the Montgomery County Common Pleas Court in a lawsuit against Q-Mark, Inc. and its president. She is asking for damages that amount to $25,000 (€18.850).
Her claim is based on a verbal statement by Q-Mark President Roberta “Bobbie” Gentile, in which the executive has asked employees not to vote for the president's reelection. She allegedly threatened them with termination were they to put their vote through.
Dayton Daily News reports that Kunkle's vote was discussed on November 7, after the elections, and that she was laid off two days after, on November 9.
Reps for the Dayton-based defense contractor Q-Mark explain Kunkle's dismissal by citing financial hardship.
“I am sure you and your readers are familiar with the ongoing uncertainties regarding defense spending, and thus the economic environment confronting defense contractors.
“The allegation that Q-Mark discharged Ms. Kunkle because of her vote is simply false,” responds Brian Wildermuth, an attorney representing the company president.
The suit also mentions Kunkle not being paid overtime for putting in extra work over her required 40 hours per week. She stresses that she has never received a negative evaluation, describing performing her tasks “efficiently and effectively.”
Gentile worded the motivation for terminating her employment as it being in the “best interest of the company.” Meanwhile, Kunkle's position remains unfilled.
“Whether you’re a Democrat or a Republican, taking it to the extreme of impairing somebody’s career because they disagree with your political choices is just wrong. [...] We’re hoping that the court will recognize that and adopt a public policy exception for her,” Kunkle’s attorney, Karen Dunlevey, argues.