Tuesday, March 04, 2008

OH20 follow-up

After my post yesterday, the following anonymous comment was left in support of Nancy Garland:

She did this as a member of APTA and in fact those in question are PAC checks she signed. They were mistakenly reported as her contributions. Of course you forget to mention her work with Rep. Hightower, or the numerous Democrats she has given to over the year. Always good to make sure you have the facts before you post something. Heck you could even call the candidate and ask her to explain yourself. I think their was a contact on that press release.

I have no idea who this came from. There is, by the way, a contact link up there in the upper right. I realize that the site needs some updating (Mayor Brennan, your name is going up soon, Mr. Madison, I hope retirement suits you), but the email works just fine. I posted an entire press release verbatim that mentions the Dems she's worked with and donated to, and I posted her complete Federal donation record as obtained from the normally reliable Center for Responsive Politics.

As this commenter went first, s/he was not privy to the other responses which were somewhat defensive in tone and supportive of Ms. Campbell. If s/he had been, they may have been a little less trigger-happy. But s/he was not, and s/he calls me out. Most of the complaints are addressed above, but the big one is not. The commenter claims that a more valid and reliable record is available by talking to the campaign, and that the records are mistaken in listing Ms. Garland as the donor (The evidence is mixed* but bears considering). I'm not going to bother a busy campaign on election day, so I'll concede that it appears quite possible that Nancy Garland has never been a personal supporter of Republicans, she has merely been a lobbyist charged with cozying up to and trying to buy influence with Republicans.

*The APTA has a long record of bi-partisan contributions, spending between $500K and $1m per cycle, sometimes more on Dems, sometimes more on the GOP. They are not merely an incumbent protection racket. For instance, they gave $10k to Sherrod Brown and 0$ to Dewine in 2006. It seems plausible that a "mistake" could occur on the part of the recipient, listing the person who signed the check, not the account-holder from whose funds the contribution was drawn. In that case, one would expect that APTA would have listed the contributions in their expenditure reports. Initial digging suggested that wasn't the case. The report covering June 1996 is available here. There is no contribution to the RNC/State Elections Committee. The report covering August 1996 is here. There is no contribution to Monday Morning PAC listed. This morning I went back and found a $1000 contribution to MMP on the July expenditure report, made the same week as the contribution attributed to Garland. There is no single contribution to the RNC/RNSEC that matches up in time and amount with the contribution listed for Garland on 6/14/06. There is a 7/29/06 expenditure to the RNSEC listed for a different amount.

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