"A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have"
Thomas Jefferson

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Tainted Campaign Contributions

The New York Times did a piece today on illegal campaign contributions from non-profit 501 (c) (3) charities.

The Times looked at lawmakers campaign filings back to 2005 and uncovered 81 such illegal gifts.

“While the amounts were not eye-popping, the contributions often flowed to lawmakers who helped the charities secure state money.”

North Country Senator Darrel Aubertine received a contribution last June from the Jefferson County Children's Home for $375, which would qualify as an illegal contribution.

Should non-profits such as the Children's Home which utilizes taxpayer's money from the state and county sources, be using YOUR money for campaign contributions?

Here is hoping Darrel returns the money or will that take another political campaign with a TV ad in order to entice the Senator to exercise proper judgment.

(Disclaimer - this has occurred on both sides of the aisle - it is wrong either way)


Dan Francis said...

It would be nice to see the whole list of the 81 "illegal gifts," instead of just poor old Darrel's cited in your post.

A link would be helpful, then we can research until our little hearts are content... [and then take action].

Anonymous said...

Dan F -- Sadly, the Times didn't provide a link. I, for one, suspect that our Senator may have found himself on the list more than once.

Alas, it took a little homework by the intrepid PIV to bring this violation to light.

It's now up to the Senator to explain how it happened, and what he plans to do about it.

And Dan, use the link above and research away!

Dan Francis said...

Thanks for that link... a quick spot check and concerns are hyped by the large number of out-of-district and out-of-state contributors...

This has always concerned me, especially the out-of-state contributors... the connection?

Power and influcence... it should be stopped -- public financing would solve that problem... but it ain't apt to happen in our lifetime.

Sad, really (and from both sides to be "fair and balanced").

Anonymous said...

"Public financing" means "taxpayer funded" -- and I think the taxpaying public has a hard time with that one.

Better disclosure is th key. For inatsnce-- we have to wait unil July to find out who was wining and dining our Senator and Assembly Member, and refilling their depleted campaign fund.

Meantime, these same people are making decisions on the budget and we have no way of knowing the connection.

What does 'Special Interest A' get for all that dough?

During election season there's a 24-hour rule to report contributions exceeding a certain amount. (I think it's $1000.)

How about applying that year-round. With computers so easily accessible, it shouldn't be too much of a burden.

And the public's right to know should always supercede the candidate's personal convenience.

Anonymous said...

This was simple oversight that is, once again, being blown out of proportion.

Anonymous said...

What you are failing to realize is that it is not illegal on the politicians behalf, but illegal on the non-profits behalf. None of these legislators did anything wrong under law.

Anonymous said...

What you are failing to realize is that it is not illegal on the politicians behalf, but illegal on the non-profits behalf. None of these legislators did anything wrong under law.

Anonymous said...

I didn't know she was under 17, your honor, honest.

I didn't know it was wrong to hire my sister, voters, really.

I didn't know that I was supposed to ask to get my bills passed, seriously.

Dan Francis said...

"Clean Elections (those candidate who pledge to run w/o insider, special interest money)" can work...

Do the research your at this national, premier site CLEAN ELECTIONS HQ

"The enlightened citizen is the informed citizen and one who is better for all of us." ~ dmf

Anonymous said...

How come every time Darrel screws up, it "just an oversight?"

Could we get some one else "overseeing," perhaps?

Anonymous said...

Jeeze imagine that a crooked politition. Did'nt obama get 60+ million in illegal contributions most from out of country donors.And was being investigated because many traced to Syria,Iran and United arab emerites funny how that investigation just ended.I guess it ended has'nt been mentioned in a spell.We as americans are in big trouble when this corruption goes unchecked.Because it grows and spreads as you can see.

hermit thrush said...

regarding anon 10:45:

ladies and gentleman, the republican base!

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