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September 28, 2006 01:57 AM UTC

More Trouble for Republican Political Committees

  • 14 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols

The Colorado Leadership Fund, a political committee (with various filings) designed to promote Republican candidates for the state house, looks to be in trouble for potentially skirting campaign finance rules. Colorado Citizens for Ethics in Government (CCEG) has filed a complaint with the Secretary of State.

Click below for the full press release…

Colorado Citizens for Ethics in Government (CCEG), a non-partisan, non-profit legal watchdog group, filed a complaint with the Secretary of State today against the Colorado Leadership Fund, LLC (CLF), a registered 527 organization, and the Colorado Leadership Fund Political Action Committee (CLF-PAC) for a scheming to avoid Colorado contribution limits. 

CLF’s tax forms indicate that corporations and large donors contributed to CLF which, in turn, handed the contributions over to CLF-PAC.  Most of those donations could not have been made directly to CLF-PAC, because they exceeded state contribution limits of $500.

According to Colorado law, political committees cannot accept contributions from a single donor over $500 per election cycle.  CLF-PAC, a registered political committee, violated the law by receiving reported contributions from CLF totaling $136,031, which is $135,531 over the lawful amount. 

CLF has violated the law by failing to register as a political committee and by failing to file reports of its contributions and expenditures. 

The violations of the contribution limits are punishable by fines of well over a half-million dollars. 

“By laundering money from corporations and other large donors, CLF has violated Colorado campaign finance law,” said Chantell Taylor, CCEG Director. “It is vital to the integrity of the electoral process that groups like CLF and CLF-PAC be held responsible for so egregiously disregarding contribution limits and disclosure requirements.”

The complaint and supporting material are available on CCEG’s website.

Comments

14 thoughts on “More Trouble for Republican Political Committees

  1. has this group gone after any Dem groups nope  so stop calling them, non-partisan. And yes the DEMs do they same thing so do not even try to pull that crap.

    1. Just because someone is a democrat or a republican does not make them partisan. Also, someone who claims to be independant is not necessarily non partisan either.

    2. so far the group over at Colorado Confidential has done a good job of blogging their facts. I don’t see a lot of other fact based blogs showing me campaign violations by Dems. Do you have any links to facts for me?

    3. Just because a group has yet to go after a democratic 527 or similar organization means nothing. Maybe, the groups they are going after have broken the law or committed an election violation and the democratic groups have not. So really, the onus is on you to find a democratic group that is committing the same violations, have this group go after them, and if they do not then you can cry foul.

      1. Dem groups are being exceedingly careful about reporting, etc.  The fact is, R groups would be all over them if they could find a ‘hook’ – at this point, they haven’t.

        Frankly, Dem groups are getting better lawyer advice.  Besides, the R lawyers may not be giving the same kind of ‘pre-emptive’ advice, because, they make their money if issues go to an ALJ or to court.

        Gessler and Zakhem must be loving this.

        1. Scott Shires.  In an August plea bargain, Shires apparently agreed to plead guilty to federal tax charges (pdf) (three counts of willfully failing to file corporate income tax returns for Octane International, Ltd., a fuel research and development firm, for the years 1999, 2000, and 2001 and three counts of aiding and abetting while serving as the company’s secretary-treasurer) and to testify against Octane’s founder and president, William Orr.  In May, a federal grand jury had indicted Orr (pdf) on 28 counts — fraud, tax evasion, failure to file tax returns, false statements (in order to obtain an earmarked grant).

          At the time of Orr’s indictment, the US Attorney for Colorado was Bill Leone; by the time Shires made his plea bargain, Troy Eid had taken over as US Attorney.  The idea that Mr. Leone and Mr. Eid could be motivated by a desire to defeat Republican candidates in the 2006 election strains credulity.

          Paragraph 4 of the Orr indictment alleges that

          Advanced Fuels International, Ltd.; Advanced Energy Partners; and Advanced Fuel Partners were business names used by defendant WILLIAM C. ORR in connection with Octane and VPC [an alternative fuel additive called “vapor phase combusion”]. These latter businesses were not registered or incorporated, and utilized one or more of the same busines addresses as Octane.

          That paragraph sounds very much like some of the recent allegations of impropriety we have read about in regard to Trailhead and the Senate Majority Fund (which Mr. Shires seems to manage).

          I don’t know that any of the allegations will turn out to be true; I am merely commenting on what I have read.  There seems to be an awful lot of smoke here.  There may well be a fire.

        2. Are you insinuating that the GOP lawyers are giving less than the best legal advice to their client(s) in the expectation that client(s) will get nabbed, thereby generating even more fees? 

          1. These guys never thought they’d get challenged.  The Colo Dems have been so incompetent for so long they figured they’d be able to get by.  I mean your last candidate’s name recognition came from the candybar.

  2. because they bring complaints against Republicans for violating the law, they must be partisan? 

    Or could it be that they are catching the Republicans breaking the law and want to hold them accountable?

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