Friday, December 21, 2007

The money primary: Meuser files early

The FEC reports are not due until January 15th but the Meuser for Congress committee report is now online and it shows some interesting numbers. Total receipts are $523,276 with $267,745 coming from individual contributions and only $5,500 from PACS compared with the $500,000 that incumbent Chris Carney has pulled in from the special interests. The difference is that Meuser loaned his campaign $250,000 which is not unusual since Chris Hackett loaned his campaign $118,000 and if I remember right Don Sherwood spent $2 million of his own money in his first race against Pat Casey. I wonder if any of those "loans" were ever paid back to the Tunkhannock Strangler.


Fun with numbers.

Of the 206 contributors to Meuser, 72 gave the maximum amount of $2300 and Hackett pulled in the max from 48 of his 79 contributors as of his September report. It must be nice to have that kind of loose change. I'm waiting for the 4th quarter reports from the other campaigns to get a better comparison.

Dan Meuser has a loyal workforce as 21 0f his contributors list Pride Mobility as their employer and have kicked in $29,700. And he has a supportive family with 12 people with the last name Meuser contributing the maximum of $2300. Nothing wrong with that, if you can't convince your family and co-workers to support your effort you have already lost.

6 Hackett's have pitched in the max for him. I couldn't find anyone named Carney making a donation.

Some other names contributing to Hackett include Republican stalwarts such as Bob Guzzardi and few people named Sordoni.

Meuser also has some familiar Republican names backing him such as Charles Flack, Bob Cordaro, AJ Munchak and former PA Attorney General Earnie Preate. This one surprised me, Jennifer Sherwood of Tunkhannock gave $1500.

Meuser is also showing some bipartisan appeal with long time Luzerne County Democratic lawyer John Moses kicking in $500 and multi-party real estate developer Robert Mericle who gave $10,000 to the present Democratic Luzerne County Commissioners this last time around giving him $2300. Mericle also gave money to Paul Kanjorski but so did Meuser.

The Pike County Courier : As far as the money race goes, Meuser said things are going well considering he did not start until after the November elections since he did “not want to take a dime away from any of the Republican candidates.”

When I looked at Meuser's FEC report I spotted 70 contributions totaling $$135,150 just in the month of October which was before the local election.

Of course I asked the Meuser campaign about that and they were good enough to respond:

Gort-

Fundraising has been going extremely well. We have been humbled by the out pouring of support from friends, family, and republican activists that have contributed to this campaign, both in dollars and in their most precious commodity- time. Our campaign is one that continues to grow both financially and at the grassroots level. The quote you refer to is true, we did not hold any fundraisers until after the November elections. The last thing we wanted to do was take a penny that could have gone to local candidates.

Quite frankly, we did the opposite! We contributed thousands of dollars to help. Some of our supporters did send checks during October and we are grateful for their support. Our limited fundraising in this quarter still has us on track to raise the dollars we need to defeat Chris Carney in the fall.
.

The PAWaterCooler.com had this to say:

Some familiar names make an appearance in the disbursements.

Over $19,000 in payments to Hallowell, Branstetter and Long, and another $30,000 to State Street Strategies.

Both are owned by payraise architect Mike Long and SSS is operated by Ray Zaborney.

Update: Meuser's FEC report has been taken down with this explanation.

38 comments:

kar said...

Wow, that's a lot of money, and as we all know money is the "life blood" of politics.

It demonstates that Meuser has wide-spread support, and should send a chilling message to some other contenders, and pretenders.

Meuser has a good story to tell, he is known & supported by party officials in Washington, and the state.

His campaign showed good judgement by not upstaging candidates in the most recent election, and unlike others they have spared the general public the distraction of political ads during the holiday season.

Come the New Year expect to see the real campaign kick-off, and residents of the 10th will learn what some of us already know, and that is that Dan Meuser is the most qualified candidate to unseat Chris Carney in November.

West Side Republican said...

Kar,

Really? Enough already. Meuser has no shot at Carney. He doesn't have the support of the local pols, the people that actually get the voters out. Too much focus on Washington and high-roller money. Sorry. To be fair, Hackett has no shot either.

ScrantonTruth said...

$69,000 paid out to Mike Long led firms... the architect of the payraise... hmmmmmm

kar said...

Gee West Side Republican (WSR),you think Meuser doesn't have support from the local pols who get the vote out?

You may want to think again, I'm told that he has overwhelming support from county leaders throughout the district, but I guess you know better.

Throw in support from nationally known figures such as Rick Santorum, and I presume there will be many others in the weeks & months to come, and I'd say he's got a pretty good hand.

The ability to raise money, the ability to gain support from local& nationally prominent individuals, and the ability to work well in Washington to get things done.

As we say in tennis; game, set, & match.

Ciao.

Anonymous said...

"We contributed thousands of dollars to help."

To who?

Anonymous said...

Mericle also gave money to Sherwood in 2006.

Anonymous said...

Money while important is not the driver in this district. It is the grassroots. Getting out and meeting people- so meuser and hackett can raise money but are they doing the hard work. Time will tell.

James said...

Of course managers at Pride, Meuser's company, are contributing to Meuser's campaign. They're not stupid. Even if you don't beleive that your boss is the right candidate, you kick in money for good face for your job. So the fact that Pride employees are kicking in cash means little except that they're wise and looking to cozy up to the boss.

You guys continue to miss the important issues like the majority of Pride prooducts are made in China not locally. Meuser has continually removed money from the district over the last 10 years in favor of China manufacturing. You'll hear more of this near the elections.

Anonymous said...

Well, KAR, why don't we just coronate Meuser right along with Hillary, and tell the rest of the candiates to save their money (and their breath) if it's already a done deal.

Not sure what cirlces you run in, but the only good things I have heard about him come from those who have given him money, or those to whom he has given money. Even the democrats like him in that regard!

Sassy Fox said...

Hey Gort or anyone else out there,
Can you post the letter to the editor that Hackett sent to the Citizens Voice? I can't find it online and would love to read it.
Thanks and Happy Holidays

kar said...

Anon,

Great, if you want to skip all the ho-hah and coronate Meuser now, you'll get no argument from me, welcome aboard.

James, you seem to be informed, sadly mis-informed that is.

Like it or globalization is not going away, companies like Pride source components overseas.

Far from taking money from the district it has allowed Pride to enjoy unprecedented growth.

That growth necessitated the hiring of many more employees, pushing Pride's total employemnt to over 1,000.

I know that you don't like to hear this, but these employees pay taxes, buy homes, buy goods & services from local merchants, raise families, support religious institutions, you know, all the things good citizens do.

Pick at it all you want, Pride is a success story that is good for the residents of Northeast Pa.

Full time permanent,benefit laden, well paying jobs beat temp positions any day of the week.

Ciao, and Merry Christmas.

Gort said...

Sassy,

Ask and ye shall receive. Thanks for the reminder.

Sassy Fox said...

Hot dam Gort, your better than Santa!
Can I have One million dollars..wait make the Euros.
Thanks

Anonymous said...

kar-maybe you can explain to me how Dan can take any credit for the success of Pride. His father started the company and Dano spent most of the time selling cars. After his dad retired he was give the position he has now. And anyone who knows the company knows his brother Scott is the brains of the outfit. If his last name wasn't Meuser he would be a janitor.

kar said...

Anon,

Just to keep things straight, you're the same anon who agreed to coronate Dan, right?

You seem to know the history of the company, or at least you think you do.

Pride,celebrated it's 20th anniversary last year, Dan has been with Pride for just under 20 years.

Scott is a brilliant guy, and a business visionary, that much cannot be disputed.

Dan's contribution to the growth of Pride is also beyond dispute. He & his brother took a company with fewer than 100 employees and turned it into a industry leader.

That transformation required hard work, intelligence,and a lot of guts, their success story has been one for the area to celebrate, well most of the area anyway.

The pervasive negative attitude that paints the perception of this
area is really brought home by your remarks.

Don't celebrate success, criticize it, assume that it was handed to people. Appaently feeling that way may soothe some feelings of under-acheivement on your own part.

Dan Meuser would be a successful individual with or without Pride, as would Scott.

Thankfully they decided to take a risk and start a company that has been a great source of economic stability for the area.

All the negative carping in the world cannot change those facts.

Have a Merry & and a Happy.

Ciao

Anonymous said...

I thought I heard Dan say he had nothing to do with the money donated to Dems like Hillary Clinton and Charlie Rangel by the Pride Mobility PAC.

So which is it, is he responsible for the company and what it does, or only responsible for the "good stuff", and his brother is responsible for the bad stuff?

kar said...

Anon,

No-one from the Meuser cmpaign has ever denied the contributions made through the PAC.

Reasonable people can disagree, but any objective examination of the contribution records of Dan Meuser or the Pride PAC would show an overwhelming percentage of the monies contributed went to republicans, and republican causes.

That is a fact, an undeniable,and indisputable fact.

Keep flogging that horse, it is beyond dead, but when you're a "one trick pony" I guess it doesn't matter that the pony is dead.

Real republicans, intellectually honest republicans know who Dan Meuser is, and they know where he stands on the issues important to the 10th district and the country.

He doesn't have to stage phony "photo ops" to get some publicity in the papers.

He has done his homework,and he has done, and continues to do the hard work.

He has visited every county in the district, met the republican leaders, met with farmers, business people, senior citizens, he uderstands their concerns.

Come April those people and many more will express their confidence in Dan Meuser by casting their votes for him.

Adeste fideles.

Anonymous said...

Anon- i work for a company that has a PAC. No one person has control of the PAC. Dave maderia was the President of the Chiropracters association, I bet if you look at there records they gave money to Dems. I don't think you would accuse Dave of being a Dem?

Anonymous said...

James- HAve you ever heard of a company named TECHNOGLASS (may have screwed up the spelling). Great company that was located here in NEPA. They went out of business because they did not globalize.
500+ jobs lost, good people out of work because the management did not realize that using globalization can help your company expand. Value added services and production can take commodity products and turn them into more valuable products on the marketplace. This sounds like what Pride has done. It sounds like Pride took this economic principle and actually added jobs.

Now look at One Source. they take good paying jobs and replace those people with individuals who are making less and have less benfits. This is reduction in wealth for the area. You have eliminated good paying jobs for jobs that simply cost less. This is not how civilizations create wealth. Globalization and adding value creates wealth not trying to save $2 per hour by hiring a cheaper person.

James said...

For the past 4 years, Dan Meuser's role has been almost exclusively as a special interests lobbiest, working on Capitol Hill to increase Medicare funding for his sector/company. It will be interesting to hear more about all of this as the elections near.

kar said...

James,

Your ability to un-cover information is impressive indeed, unfortunately it is all inaccurate, or un-true.

Dan Meuser's role over the last 4 years has been as President of Pride.

Has he worked to ensure that disabled Americans have access to the mobility products they need to resume or maintain productive lives?

Guilty as charged.

Has he also worked on behalf of the 1000+ tax-paying, familly raising,home buying,local citizens employed by Pride?

Damn you James, he's guilty again.

Let's me see if I have this straight. Dan Meuser fights for disabled Americans.

Many of these Americans resume productive, tax-paying roles in society, that can't be good.

Dan Meuser fights for the 1000+ plus local employees of Pride.

These people have full time permanent positions, with benefits, these people pay taxes locally, use goods & services locally, buy homes locally, support religious institutions locally.

James you're right, who the hell does Meuser think he is?

Thanks for opening my eyes, we really need someone who has done little or nothing for the people of the district, someone with no experience, no contacts, no plan, no vision.

That description certainly isn't Dan Meuser.

So James maybe you can supply the names of a few "empty suits" who fit the bill, I can think of 2, maybe you can supply a few more.


Ciao

Anonymous said...

Kar- you have a very good sense of humor. Big companies have to have a Government relations dept. The government is simply out of control and is killing business. Muser did what he had to do to protect his employees and his customers. As Kar says- Damn him the bastard. Does your boy Hackett belong to an industry association, I know Maderia did- and God forbid they probably gave to Dems. Boy that Dave is really a RINO (this is saracasm, Dave)

James said...

KAR, it's clear from your dismissive, joke-filled retorts that neither you nor the Meuser for Congress camp take the role of running for Congress seriously.

However, it is clear that the constituents of the District do take their votes and Congressman very seriously. The constituents understand that fiscal conservatism is about advocating lower government spending, not lobbying to hold and increase Medicare funding for one's own industry and personal gain.

You keep stating that the elderly and disabled need wheelchairs, which is correct. However, Meuser is hardly the savior of disabled Americans. Let's remember that there has been tremendous over billing and outright Medicare fraud in Meuser's industry (Google “power wheelchair fraud”). How do you reconcile for the constituency that Meuser can be a fiscal conservative while seeking to bloat Medicare arguably back to the days of over billing and over use of wheelchairs in such a questionable sector?

I'm not looking for an answer from you. But if you and Meuser are to get serious about this race, you'd better stop kidding and start addressing.

Bob Kelly said...

James, you're pretty bold demanding an answer for questions and statement that aren't true. "Google power wheelchair fraud": you're one of those people who probably believe Wickipedia is factual. "I read it on the internet so it must be true."
There's no record ever of Meuser lobbying to INCREASE medicare spending. He's tried to slow down the drastic cuts. You remind me of a liberal. When the Republicans reduced the amount of annual funding growth put in to school lunches the Dems cried "Republicans are cutting funding for school lunch programs!!!"
Same kind of cry wolf tactics there James. Why should they be addressed???

ExiledinDC said...

I think it is interesting thAt the Sordonis are supporting Hackett, its means the estbalishment is not united behind Mueser.But then again the Sordoni's are good people(not that mueser supporter arnt i just read about that fam doing good things)

kar said...

James,

Rest assured that I take this very seriously, however when dealing with someone,such as yourself,who continully throws out mis-information, distortions,& inaccuracies, one can only laugh.

Meuser's record of advocacy, and accomplishment is not subject to interpretation, it is a clear & positive record.

You & your ilk can keep digging, looking for dirt to throw Meuser's way, as long as you don't take the time to check your facts you should have no trouble.

Yeah, keep using the net, as Homer Simpson said, "all he best conspiracy theories are there".

Ciao

Bob Kelly said...

exiledindc, you're half correct. Not all the Sordoni bros are supporting Hackett. I'll tell you someone who is big behind Hackett. Joe Salono from A Pickett construction. A very big union busting low wage paying contractor. I know this because my brother use to work for them. They break all kinds of OSHA rules, pay low wages and use their people until they're finished with them. Then they get rid of them. Also, on prevailing wage jobs, they don't pay carpenters as carpenters. If you're swinging a hammer for a half hour, you get carpenter rates for a half hour. If you have to pick up a shovel to mover dirt out of the way for an hour, you get laborer rates for an hour.
So please, don't even get me started. I know the specific people who are endorsing Hackett. It's not a good thing. Can you say "we need some temps on the construction site this week?"
(wink, wink)

Scott said...

James,

Don't worry, KAR will tell you what to think, what does and doesn't matter (like Meusers contributions, THIS YEAR, to liberal democrats...that's old news, he'll say, come up with something new), and no matter how many facts you have to back it up, it will all be conspiracy theories!

And if you get to serious about the issues, he'll tell you you have no sense of humor. Well, as a conservative voter, I have less and less of a sense of humor when it comes to liberals and people like Meuser who support them without apology! I'll leave the humor for Mean Old Man and Ann Coulter.

James said...

Here’s a factual quote on Meuser’s industry: “Medicare spending for power wheelchairs, one of the program's most expensive items of durable medical equipment (DME), rose 450 percent from 1999 through 2003, while overall Medicare spending rose by about 11 percent for the same period, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)”

Keep in mind that there are only three major players in the power wheelchair industry, so Meuser personally gained a lot from that 450% increase in Medicare spending on wheelchairs.

That’s not advocacy. That’s the special interests in Meuser’s industry exploiting Medicare to no end at the expense of tax-paying constituents. This very serious issue of Meuser claiming to be a fiscally conservative advocate while the facts show him leading a company and industry that increased Medicare spending 450%, is just one of many issues plaguing his candidacy.

What is very disconcerting to me is that when I raised this single issue among many here, the Meuser camp dismisses the facts and actually mocks me and other constituents within the district. If Meuser can’t even address one constituent’s valid concerns, how does he possibly have a chance when all of his skeletons come out when the race gets heated?

Hackett and Carney take politics and constituents seriously, but based on the Meuser camp’s postings here, that standard doesn’t seem to hold true for him.

KAR, if I were your camp, I’d learn from what I’ve said here, and get serious about running the Meuser campaign before the ads, press, and constituents really start telling the tale.

Anonymous said...

A couple of things here

1.scott- I like the mean old man and ann coulter joke- As a conservative voter how do you feel knowing that Hackett who was vice chair of the WB chamber of commerce oversaw a 13 million over budget expense that has nearly bankrupted the chamber. Fact He was the vice chair during this time, he touts it in his message, and fact is that they were 13 million dollars overbudget on the theater project. Fact- his biggest supporters also are the leadership of the chamber (look at the FEC report). if he is 13 million over budget on a 30 million dollar project what will he do with a 30 billion dollar budget. The chamber is in such dire straits they are asking Luzerne county to forgive 3.5 million in loans. Not that the county can afford it because under Greg Skrepnak they are almost broke. The same guy who gave hacket a no bid (according to Steve Urban, times leader) 1.2 million dollar contract.

2. James- meuser was asked this question when he was on Sue henry. A question meant to embarass him planted by the hackett campaign. he answered honestly that there was fraud in the industry. His company identified the fraud and turned it into the federal government 6 months before they did anything. Also the advocacy protected 1200 jobs in the area- good paying, health care providing jobs. If you are interested in the truth then ask him, you say he has not addressed your question. Another thing when you keep a disabled senior in there home with a power wheelchair you save the taxpayer about $40,000 per year because that money would come from Medicaid. I know because my father was able to stay at home for about 2 years by using a power wheelchair and getting some home healthcare. We paid also paid but if he did not have those items he would have had to go to a nursing home ($41,000 per year). Also Bob Kelly is right his company did not advocate for increases in spending. You need to check your facts. Have you even asked him about these issues or are you just believing the hackett/Maderia ticket. Hackett takes things seriously?????- he paid to have the hate monger mexican president fox to come speak at Wilkes University and then protested him. That is taking things seriously. Give me a break.

I score this

Meuser- 2 advocates- KAR and anonymous # 1

Hackett- 2 advocates- Scott and James

kar said...

James,
Thanks for the advice, I'll deal with you later.

Scott, Scott,Scott, I think I finally understand you.

It's not what Dan Meuser & his company did in the way of donations, or the fact that the overwhelming majority(80% plus) went to republicans, or republican causes.

It's that no one apologized to you, or "His Holiness" Dave Maderia for the meager amount that went to democrats.

Apparently explaining, ad naseum, the reasons behind the donations isn't sufficient for you & your disciples, or more accurately Dave Maderia & his disciples.

Unlike others in this race, Meuser's camp never made excuses.

They simply laid out the facts, and reasonable people, especially those involved in the business world were satisfied.

Scott, I don't speak for Meuser, or his campaign, but you know what?

I'm sorry,I'm sorry that you and other members of your tribe are so self important that you feel that you are entitled to an apology from a man, and a company that have done nothing but enhance the economic health of this area.

A man who has toiled to better the prospects of those Americans suffering from a disabling injury or illness.

A man who has also toiled on behalf of the many people who call Pride home, and who have made a better lives for themselves because of their affiliation with the company.

Pull yourself and "His Holiness" from the 18th century, and take a look around, is it perfect? Certainly not, but you can fix more problems by working within the system, than you can by standing outside throwing stones.

Meuser has demonstrated that he can work with others to get things accomplished.

A reasonable person can accomplish much and maintain their principles, Dan has demonstrated that time & again.

I can't help but wonder when it comes to thye economic health of the area, what have you done? What has Dave Maderia done?

Ciao.

Bob Kelly said...

You know, it's sad but the more I post and read these blogs the more annoyed I'm getting with a certain candidate.
You people who are blogging for the Hackett/Madeira ticket never address ANY questions or statements made. Maybe it's smart, maybe not. Don't think any of these things will go away. Especially if you ignore them. You're like a bunch of little kids. If someone catches you doing something you ignore the situation and point to someone else. "But he did this, and he did that. Don't pay attention to me."
I said a few weeks ago I don't have a preference yet since I don't know enough about the other candidates but I can say Hackett/Madeira has totally turned me off. His commercials are full of half truths, his bloggers post half truths and anyone who knows politics in the area knows how dirty Madeira plays, so this ticket is looking more and more like the slimeball ticket. Sorry, but take a good look at how you guys are running things.
Ya know, years ago I met Hackett. I told him how I was into cycling too and he pretty much talked down to me since he was so much more experienced. VERY full of himself. Can't carry on a conversation. I had hoped he grew up. Apparently not. I better stop because I'm getting more and more P.O.ed the more I talk about him.
Chris and Dave, eventually word will get out about your true personalities. Then you may as well pack it in.

Scott said...

KAR,

Arrogance and condescension are all you seem to know how to do.

You and your cronies at Meuser headquarters keep looking down from your high horse on the regular guys who make this country and this area work (oh, and we go to the polls), and I'll keep working the grassroots for smaller government.

I don't want someone like Meuser who knows how to "work the system", I want someone who will work to fix the system. It's people who know how to "work the system" who gave us the pay raise and other fiascos.

I'm not looking for apologies from Meuser for supporting liberal democrats, he's made it quite clear that will never happen. It would be nice to hear he won't do it again, but I bet that'll never happen either, because that's not how you "work the system"...

hmbrwr said...

I heard a Hackett commercial on the radio where he claimed he created hundreds of jobs. A friggin natural disaster creates hundreds of jobs too. Jobs that are temporary. Like the jobs you created.
"Hi, I'm Hurricane Katrina. I created hundreds of jobs. Send me to Congress."
And by the way Chris, I'm still waiting for my email updates you said you'd send me from your site. But I guess my vote or the vote of my family and friends really doesn't matter to you. I'll pass that along.

kar said...

Scott,

I'll take your answer to mean that neither you, or "His Holines" have done anything positive for the people of this area.

Oh wait, let me amend that, Maderia provided a great service by getting whipped in the last election, that my friends is a gift that keeps on giving.

paul said...

Scott-

1. Hackett gave Luzerne County financial destroyer Greg Skrepnak $5,000. First donation he ever made.

2. Greg Skrepnak awards him a no bid contract worth $1.2 million to bring back retired workers at their old pay plus a 19-30% premium for One Source (hackett's company).

3. Hackett is a financial genius who is over budget 10+ million on the theater project as Vice Chair of the WB chamber of commerce. The biggest contributors are the same people who are the leadership of the chamber.

This is the guy who will fix the problems with the system? He is the problem. You say that Muser gave to liberal Dems- did his company get a 1.2 million dollar no bid contract or any contract for that matter?


PS- Hackett pays thousands to have Vincente Fox come to speak at Wilkes (president of wilkes, big hackett contributor) and then protests him to get some press coverage.

Remember- just for the record- "anybody but hackett" because he is a liar. Times leader letter to editor from hackett says he did not know who was speaking, it was in the planning stages for 8 months- LIE, LIE, LIE, LIE

kar said...

Scott,

I hate to be picky, but language is important.

Please re-read my earlier comments.

I never said that Meuser would "work the system", rather I said "he would work within the system" in order to fix it.

While you and "His Holiness" curse the darkness, Meuser will light a candle.

How goes the search for a new dupe to muddy the waters?

Maybe your annointed hand puppet Hackett can find you a temp to run for the seat.

Happy New Year to all.

Ciao baby.

Scott said...

KAR,

Your right words are important, and I never accused you of saying Meuser knew how to "work the system", the fact of the matter is he said so himself.

I am and have been working a long time to "light the candle" as you say, and I know reform won't come from juvenile name calling like you seem to relish in.

ciao