22 hours ago
Friday, March 05, 2010
Just about every campaign has a few of these give the money back squabbles.
In 2008 Paul Kanjorski's camp demanded that Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta return a contribution from crooked Alaskan Senator Ted Stevens. I don't think that he did. Kanjo got some cash from NY Congressman and Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel who is under fire for ethical violations and the Republicans are apopolectic “It comes as no surprise to the residents of Pennsylvania’s 11th Congressional District that Paul Kanjorski has once again chosen personal greed over ethical and decent behavior,” GOP Executive Director Renita Fennick said in a PR. Ed Mitchell says the Kanjorski campaign hasn't decided to give back the money or donate it to charity or just keep it. Democratic primary opponent Corey O'Brien piled on “Decisions like these, to not return or donate the money, are why we’ve lost confidence in our leaders.”
A few days ago Malcolm Derk sent out a release demanding that Congressman Chris Carney "should immediately return this tainted money” from Rangel.
TL: U.S. Rep. Chris Carney will send $21,000 from his campaign war chest to a local charity, keeping a promise that if embattled U.S. Rep. Charles Rangel were ever found to have violated House ethics rules, he would return the money.
“I have long said that I would give to charity any contributions from Mr. Rangel if the ethics committee found wrongdoing. I will be donating the contributions my campaign has received from Mr. Rangel to the Northeast Regional Cancer Institute,” Carney said
I've received emails from the Derk camp and others taking credit for Carney's decision to dump Rangel's money like so many others across the country.
Another 10th CD Republican candidate Dave Madeira says:“Chris Carney may parade himself as a bipartisan fiscal-conservative, but the truth is revealed in his sources of income. Even without the scandal, what is Carney doing taking money from Rangel,” Madeira
asked “Better yet, what does Carney owe Rangel for that $21,000?”
Most of the time these inside baseball arguments are don't register with voters. Maybe a public financing scheme for Congressional campaigns is the best way to get past it. An added benefit would be that the "special interests" won't be able to buy legislation.