Saturday, February 23, 2008

Out-Of-State Special Interests Finance Carson's Campaign

Out-of-state special interest monies are flowing into the campaign of Democratic 7th District congressional candidate Andre Carson despite rhetoric coming from him in last Tuesday's candidates forum at which he decried the role of special interest money in our campaigns and called for comprehensive campaign finance reform. According to a filing with the FEC this week, Carson snatched up $13,200 from out-of-state PACS within a 48-hour period, while reporting no similar large contributions which trigger the 48-hour reporting requirement from within the 7th District.

One contribution which is likely to draw attention is a $1,700 contribution Carson accepted from the Pakistani American Public Affairs Committee. According to PAKPAC's website, it is "the largest and most organized group of American Muslims for a single country." The PAC's objectives include expanding federal aid to Pakistan and advocating the appointment of more Pakistani Americans to positions within the U.S. government. Carson, who would become only the second Muslim elected to the U.S. Congress, has raised concerns in the 7th District among members of his own party because of his ties to Nation of Islam Leader Louis Farrakhan, who has a long history of espousing views condemned as being anti-Semitic, racist and anti-gay. Carson invited Farrakhan to eulogize his grandmother, the late U.S. Rep. Julia Carson, at her funeral. Farrakhan echoed U.S. Rep. Carolyn Kirkpatrick's (D-MI) support for Carson at his grandmother's funeral. Kirkpatrick claimed the dying Carson told her to "send my seed", referring to grandson Andre.

Carson's largest out-of-state contribution, $5,000, came from Majority PAC, which is controlled by U.S. Rep. John Murtha (D-PA), an outspoken critic of the war in Iraq. Murtha was recently embarrassed when an FBI video tape from the ABSCAM investigation surfaced in which he hinted he might accept a bribe at some point in the future. As Wikipedia writes, "The FBI videotaped Murtha responding to an offer of $50,000, with Murtha saying, 'I'm not interested... at this point. [If] we do business for a while, maybe I'll be interested, maybe I won't', right after Murtha had offered to provide names of businesses and banks in his district where money could be invested legally." A resolution was also offered by U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) in 2007 calling for Murtha to be reprimanded after he complained that Murtha threatened retaliatory action against him on his district's earmarks after Rogers attempted to cut an earmark for Murtha's district. The motion was later tabled without action.

Carson collected $1,000 from U.S. Rep. Artur Davis' (D-AL) campaign committee. He also cashed a $2,500 check from UPS PAC in Atlanta, GA and a $3,000 check from Oregon-based Committee for a Livable Future. More importantly, Carson's TV and radio ads hitting Indianapolis' airwaves are being funded entirely by the DCCC. A source confirms that the DCCC began dumping large expenditures in the 7th District race after its internal polling conducted about three weeks ago confirmed the results of an earlier poll conducted by U.S. Rep. Carolene Mays, which showed Carson locked in a dead heat race with Republican Jon Elrod.

40 comments:

Wilson46201 said...

Tim Durham of Fortville (outside the District) is seemingly the only "big bucks" contributor with $2300 to Jonathon Elrod...

Advance Indiana said...

At least he lives in Marion County and has a business in the 7th District.

Wilson46201 said...

The Murtha tape you characterize as "recent" is from 1980.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abscam

The poor Elrod campaign must be incredibly desperate to be trotting out stuff from when André Carson was six years old in an attempt to smear him ... do better dumpster diving!

Advance Indiana said...

Sorry, Wilson. The tape's existence did not become public until the American Spectator reported on it less than 2 years ago. http://www.spectator.org/dsp_article.asp?art_id=10426

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this information. Those who want campaign finance reform need just this sort of real time data to make a good decision at the poles.

Anonymous said...

Thank you AI! This is great reporting.

Anonymous said...

When you reference UPS, UPS PAC in Atlanta, GA, are you speaking of the United Parcel Service or the United States Postal Union?

Marti said...

It's pretty pathetic you're continuing to play the religion card. Not saying I'm shocked, but I think you're seeing the writing on the wall when John McCain doesn't stump for your man.

I understand why you're doing it though... you don't want the voters to know that Jon's stands on most issues mirror GW.

Advance Indiana said...

It's the United Parcel Service PAC.

Advance Indiana said...

Perhaps you find no outrage in Carson embracing one of the most bigoted religious leaders in this country, Marti, but others do. Jon Elrod's views are more in line with average 7th District voters than your's or Carson's. You are both far left extremists. And if anyone doesn't believe me, just check out her unbending leftist views she has posted around the blogosphere.

Anonymous said...

I just recieved a mailer from the IN. Democrat Party.
It shows that the Marion County Sheriffs Department endorses André Carson.
I thought it to be unlawful for a county agency to support candidate
Oh, wait!! It's the Democrats. They are untouchable by the law.
Kerry Forestal and 2 other ranking deputies are pictured in the mailer.
The picture was taken in the conference room at the Marion County Sheriffs Department!

So much for integrity in congress.
André should be ashamed of himself, but, then again, he is a CARSON

Advance Indiana said...

As I understand the law, an LEO can be photographed with a candidate for political office but is barred from electioneering or using police cars or other government resources for any electioneering purposes. If they were taking campaign photos in a sheriff's department office, that is clearly illegal. If any LEO was doing this while on duty, that is also against the law.

Anonymous said...

First, this is a no news item that you are trying to make into a big news item. PACs donate to candidates all over the country both dem and repub. UPS has lots of employees in the 7th district. The DCCC and the RCCC routinely support candidates especially those in special elections who have very little time to raise money. In case you want to know, I sent Andre Carson $100 and I live in zip code 46204.

Wilson46201 said...

Speaking of mailings or TV spots: has anybody seen any from Elrod yet?

Anonymous said...

If Andre could make money off of
staging a hog roast, he would,
Muslim or no Muslim.

Anonymous said...

I have seen Elrod yard Signs in the PIKE area - No sign of any Carson signs.

Will they be RED and state "I HEART ANDRE" ?

Anonymous said...

Whats the matter Wilson46201?
Can't find a defense for your boy, André, so you have to pick on the opponent?
What André did is illegal! All you can do is state the lack of advertising by Elrod?
Man, you need to wake up!

Vox Populi said...

Gary,

The DCCC is not funding Caron's campaign ads. The DCCC can only offer support in the form of attack ads or issue ads, and they can't have the candidate they are supporting in them. Their ad campaign is seperate from the Carson ad campaign.

Wilson46201 said...

Make up your own mind about the 3 candidates for Congress tomorrow morning at 9:30am on WTHR, Ch.13, when they'll appear jointly for questioning...

(Interestingly, I was informed recently by a prominent local Muslim (not André) that it's OK to serve pork to others, it just cant be eaten by Muslims. Not that André Carson is planning a hog roast but it might be a good fundraising idea! Thanks!)

Wilson46201 said...

The thousands of red yard signs say: André Carson for Congress.

Advance Indiana said...

Surprised to see you commenting over here, Vox Populi. You're normally over at the other blog done by the young man on the Democratic Party's payroll. That's the same party collecting 5-figure payments from the late Congresswoman's campaign while she was dying late last year. I hear the Carson folks gave you some Kook-Aid to drink on Tuesday night and you left there thinking that David O would still have a prayer of beating Carson in the primary even if he won the special election. You better visit someone for an anecdote real quick. Unless Andre is defeated on March 11, David O, Carolene Mays, Woody Myers, et al don't have a chance against Carson in that 8-candidate field, particularly when Carson's name sits atop the long list of candidates.

Advance Indiana said...

Wilson, Didn't anyone from JMCC Church tell you it was illegal to place 200 political yard signs on church property the other night?

Wilson46201 said...

Nope!

Anonymous said...

At least he lives in Marion County and has a business in the 7th District.

Fortville isn't in Marion County by any stretch of the imagination.

Anonymous said...

Wilson wrote:
"(Interestingly, I was informed recently by a prominent local Muslim (not André) that it's OK to serve pork to others, it just cant be eaten by Muslims. Not that André Carson is planning a hog roast but it might be a good fundraising idea! Thanks!)"

Will he be trying to serve pork to his Jewish constituents, since he has demonstrated he holds them in so little regard?

AR

Anonymous said...

Wilson, where can I get some yard signs.......I want one and I have 4 or 5 friends who want one?

Wilson46201 said...

http://www.AndreCarson.com
has the contact info for the campaign & yardsigns.

In the interests of fairness: Shepard2008.com & JonElrod.com

Wilson46201 said...

AngryRepublican: not to worry! Since you live outside the 7th District up in Hamilton County, you won't be a constituent of Congressman André Carson's. You're represented by Republican Danny Burton, a most Christian man (just ask him!)...

Why not spend your anger at changing the Representative in your own area instead of trying to hassle others elsewhere?

Anonymous said...

Andre is a sexist! Wilson has the tape, I am sure he was told to destroy it by now. I laugh everytime Andre's commercial come on with his wife and talk about what kind of future they want for their daughter. Based on what Andre said, clearly they want men to treat their daughter like an object and to be paid less than a man even though they do the same job.

Anonymous said...

Wilson,

BELIEVE ME, I am working on replacing the congressman up here. :-)

And if elected, Andre will represent all of Indiana, not just the 7th District.

All I've ever asked is that he repudiate the comments of LF. That's it. I don't care if Andre is Muslim; I don't care that he's Julia's grandson; and I certainly don't care that he's a Democrat.

I care about his anti-Semitism. If he would repudiate LF's comments, I think MANY people would be relieved.

The fact that I don't live in the 7th District is immaterial. If that's your standard, then you'd better stop talking about legislators who are from other districts than the one in which you live. I mean, if that's the standard you are going to apply, then it applies to you as well.

AR

Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, there are multiple homes with Fortville rural addresses which are in Marion County. I am not sure if they're in the 7th.

And by any measure, Wilson, Andre should've returned the PAKPAC contribution. It'll cause him more trouble than he can count--mark my words.

Marti, swewetie, did yu ever think that Mr. Elrod might not want Sen. McCain campaigning for him in the 7th? A distinct possibility. W isn't very popular in the 7th, and I'm guessing McCain won't be, either. At any rate, after he campaigned here for two hours, he needed a nap, thus no time was left over for an Elrod appearance.

Marty, as my kids say: check yourself, before you wreck yourself.

Anonymous said...

AR, since you are into repudiating and judging other people, would you repudiate your congressman for:

[1] adulterous acts
[2] fathering a child out of wedlock while married to another woman
[3] shooting melons in his back yard trying to prove a murder conspiracy

[4] missing votes in Congress to play golf

[5] making a national fool of himself at the HGH hearings and steroid abuse

[6] being a puppet of the Miami Cuban community.

Anonymous said...

Someone wrote:
"AR, since you are into repudiating and judging other people, would you repudiate your congressman for:

[1] adulterous acts
[2] fathering a child out of wedlock while married to another woman
[3] shooting melons in his back yard trying to prove a murder conspiracy

[4] missing votes in Congress to play golf

[5] making a national fool of himself at the HGH hearings and steroid abuse

[6] being a puppet of the Miami Cuban community."

Well, for the record, I'm not a candidate for office, so I'm not sure that my repudiation is anywhere near significant. I clearly think #4 is a serious matter. I don't think #6 is really an issue, frankly, and just seems silly. Nor is #5 particularly important, I don't think.

Some of what you raise, though, I would really object to and have serious questions about my Congressman. (And, as I've said before, I'm no fan of Dan Burton and can't wait until he's gone.)

I would say, though, the issue of fathering a child out of wedlock is much more precarious - there, you aren't just talking about an affair, you're talking about another person who resulted from such a thing, and I don't think that's really a political issue.

The fact that Andre Carson is running for office and will likely be the Congressman for the 7th District is important here. Absolutely he should repudiate such comments (as, I think, Senator Obama did.) For me, as a Jew, that's a serious matter. It's not a partisan one for me. There are lots of Democrats that I like, so it's not partisan for me.

But if he's going to represent such a large number of Jews (many of whom are my relatives and who themselves are outraged), he ought to speak out directly on this point. And to date, contrary to what Wilson says, he has not done so. Yes, he has general statements about equality and non-descrimination, but they do not specifically address the hate-monger with which he has been associated. That's serious.

Why has he not done so? I think the answer is clear. He is an anti-Semite who sees no need to repudiate such claims. I've never met him, so it's pure speculation on my part. However, I cannot fathom why someone would not repudiate such vitriolic and hateful comments unless he or she truly agreed with them.

AR

Anonymous said...

I'm fairly new to the whole political arena but I do have to seriously question what Andre brings to the table. It seems to me he has rhetoric but no actual concept of what will be good for the Country or the 7th. In fairness, I wasn't a big fan of Julia either but I'm fairly confident that if my choice were a Julia clone or Andre I'd go with the clone.

Vox Populi said...

Advance Indiana--I appreciate your concern, but I was merely pointing out that you made a factually incorrect statement. As far as the "kook-aid," I assure you Mr. Elrod's views on economic issues and the issue of choice assisted me in my decision to tone it down. While Andre made a ridiculous statement about raising the minimum wage to $12.00, ending the Iraq War and repealing the Bush tax cuts are more important to me.

I have faith in David Orentlicher's abilities. And since the Republicans don't have a competitive primary, you might want to encourage some of your friends to cross over and vote for him.

Oh, and I'm still trying to figure out what Thomas working for the Democratic Party has to do with my posting habits.

Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, there are multiple homes with Fortville rural addresses which are in Marion County. I am not sure if they're in the 7th.

Mr. Durham's manor on 113th Street is obviously not in Marion County.

Anonymous said...

The Carson group did the same thing last time at Robin Run. I thought I would be nice and tell them that the Robin Run people were going to ask them to remove the signs ( so why waste the time to put them out ) - but no they would not take my advice - they put them all out - then got told to take them all back up.

:)

Anonymous said...

When will all of you learn. The Democrats do not care how they win an election as long as they win. andre will play the same game as his grandmother. Both he and his wife are Black Muslims.

Anonymous said...

Does this surprise anyone? Carson can be bought. Just ask Cripe Architects.

John Wallace said...

Special Interest Money is Nothing More Than Bribery

Members of Congress have managed to create a seemingly lawful system whereby they can legally accept money from lobbyists or other persons who represent special interest groups that are actively involved in trying to influence those same politicians in future votes. The special interest groups that contribute large sums of money to political campaigns want and expect “their politicians” to enact (or help in some way) legislation that favors the group that provided the money. In America today, we are living under a political system that not only allows, but encourages and condones the legalized bribery of members of congress. That is why I believe “America has the best congress that special interest money can buy.”

Compare these two examples:

1. If a known drug dealer gives a police officer in a narcotics enforcement unit a $1,000. “Contribution” for the policeman’s ball and says “I hope you consider looking the other way when I’m selling drugs on the corner.” Whether or not the police officer takes any kind of official action that benefits the drug dealer, if he accepts the money, he commits the crime of bribery, right?

2. If a lobbyist or member of a special interest group gives a member of congress a $1,000. “Contribution” for his campaign and says: I hope you consider our position on any upcoming votes that affect us.” Whether or not the congressmen or Senator takes some kind of official action that benefits that person or organization, if he accepts the money, isn’t that still bribery?

Neither of these public servants should be taking money from people or organizations to influence their decisions they will make during the course of performing their official duties. Shouldn’t both situations be considered illegal conduct by those involved? Well, not if you are a member of congress. Bribery is defined as “a corrupt activity in which a person offers or receives goods, money, services, etc. to sway a person’s opinion, action, or decision.” Merely accepting the goods, money, services, etc, is a crime. It is immaterial whether or not the person receiving the benefit, does anything. In the case of members of congress, however, receiving money is only considered to be bribery if the briber explicitly says to the politician (the one being bribed): "I'm giving you this money as payment for a yes or no vote on the house floor tomorrow."

The reality of political life in America today is that politicians are being bribed every day by special interest groups that want them to legislate in a way that benefits them and not the American people. Americans are bearing the brunt of this horrific situation in ways that affect us all every day of our lives. The current campaign finance laws are built on a legal fiction. The legal fiction is that campaign contributions from special interest groups are considered to be legal and within the law even though they are actually bribes. Money given to members of congress by special interest groups is nothing more than "legalized bribery." Through bundled contributions and PAC giving, industries, labor unions, and other special interest groups pay to persuade lawmakers to vote their way on the issues.

No matter how it is said, Special Interest dollars buys votes and it also buys elections. The real scandal in the nation’s capitol is that this everyday bribery remains legal. Candidates who please their special interest money donors through their votes, are usually rewarded with more bribes, I mean more campaign contributions. This legalized bribery system has created a “Privileged Oligarchy” made up of selected members of congress and big donor elites from wealthy special interest groups. This oligarchy is currently governing this country and making decisions that oftentimes are not in the best interests of the American people, but rather in favor of the special interest groups.

Our elections should be about what American citizens want, not about what big special interest donors want.

I will support any legislation that defines the receipt of special interest money by members of congress as bribery and therefore illegal.

I also will support legislation that removes the monetary limits on individual contributions to campaigns, as the US Constitution does not give Congress the authority to set such limits because it limits the citizens’ free speech rights.

I support the continuation of legislation requiring the full and immediate disclosure of all contributions to Federal election campaigns. No exceptions or loopholes allowed.

Although I do not fully support the concept of government financing of campaigns, the following two pieces of legislation, currently introduced in both the Senate and House of Representatives, are a step in the right direction and I would support them as well. They are H.R. 1614 “The Clean Money, Clean Elections Act of 2007” and S.936 “The Fair Elections Now Act.”

By:
JOHN W. WALLACE
Candidate for Congress
New York’s 20th Congressional District
www.johnwallaceforcongress.com