Politics Slog: Good for Republicans Too!
posted by June 20 at 12:14 PMon
I’ve got an item coming out in today’s Stranger (similar to a Slog post I did yesterday) quoting the Washington State Democrats’ preemptive strike on the state GOP.
D State Party Chair Dwight Pelz warns the GOP not to funnel Norm Maleng’s campaign war chest to Republican KC Prosecutor candidate Dan Satterberg. (Satterberg was longtime KC Prosecutor Maleng’s chief of staff. Maleng died suddenly last month, leaving a $194,000 campaign fund.)
I couldn’t reach the GOP by deadline yesterday to get their response to Pelz’s attack in print, but wonders of technology and blogging: I can post it here.
So, to recap, here’s yesterday’s hit from the Democrats:
Under state law, it is illegal to transfer so-called “surplus” campaign funds – the money left over after retirement, loss, or death – from one candidate’s accounts directly to that of another candidate. It is, however, legal to donate to charity, or to a party organization — but if the funds do go to a political party, any quid pro quo understanding that the funds will then be donated to or spent in support a particular candidate would run afoul of Washington State’s campaign finance laws.
In the case of the prosecutor’s race, State Democratic Party Chairman Dwight Pelz says that if large amounts of cash from Maleng’s campaign coffers are funneled through the Republican Party back to the GOP nominee for the position, Republican Dan Satterberg – as some Satterberg backers have been whispering is likely – it would be tantamount to the sort of illegal and unethical political money laundering< that Republicans have become known for on the national level.
And here’s the response I just got from Michael Young, head of the KCGOP:
“You know, I was surprised at the tone and the tenor of Dwight’s statement. It was tacky and tawdry. Here it is just a few week’s after Norm has died and he makes this shot across the bow, a personal attack on Judy Maleng [Norm’s wife, who is in charge of the funds now] based on no evidence whatsoever.”
Young said he thinks Judy Maleng will give the money to charity and that “Dan Satterberg can certainly raise enough money himself to win in King County. But even if Judy wanted to do that [help Satterberg], that’s her decision, not Dwight’s. Is it typical of Dwight to come across as a total cad, to act like a jerk? Evidently Dwight needs to grow up. This is a state chair?”
I don’t think Judy Maleng can send the money to Satterberg even if she wanted to, but … god damn… that’s quite a response from Young.