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Tuesday, January 26, 2016

GOP campaign financing: Part 6

Photo credit: irishmirror.ie

GOP campaign financing: Part 6 ~ Donald J. Trump
The donors to Trump’s campaign are unlike those backing any other presidential candidate -- of either party. Trump is financing his own campaign. He’s accepting small contributions from individuals, selling hats and other merchandise online, but he is not accepting corporate gifts, he has insisted that no SuperPACS use his name, and he does not accept funding through SuperPACS. Smaller business contributions are listed here.
And nobody knows the racket between corporations and politicians better than Trump. He has used the system for years. Trump has talked about his past business practice of contributing to politicians in both parties to gain access. 
On the other hand, he is pandering like a politician when he supports ethanol subsidies to win the Iowa caucus.    
But there is one indicator that the hedge funds/SuperPACS/Wall Street/CoC donor class is concerned. According to the Wall Street Journal, the president of the Chamber of Commerce, Tom Donahue, is worried about a Trump victory:
The head of the nation’s biggest business lobby inveighed against presidential candidates singling out immigrants, ethnic or religious groups, highlighting divisions among supporters of the Republican establishment and the party’s leading candidate Donald Trump.
“There are the voices, sometimes very loud voices, who talk about walling off America from talent and trade and who are attacking whole groups of people based not on their conduct but on their ethnicity or religion,” Thomas Donohue, president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, said in a speech on Thursday. “This is morally wrong and politically stupid.”
When asked if the comments were specifically about Mr. Trump, Mr. Donohue said they applied to any one of the candidates from the right who “stepped over the boundary” on issues such as immigration and trade.
“They lost track of who we are and what we stand for and how we fix this economy,” he said.
But the remarks closely echo similar comments from South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and other Republicans who have pushed back against of Mr. Trump’s policy prescriptions on immigration and security.
In other words, the CoC is worried that they will not be able to influence Trump. Compare that with the latest exposé on Conservative Treehouse reporting on the SuperPAC money going into anti-Trump ads (and pro-Cruz ads) in Iowa.
It’s always the same: Follow the money. So far with Trump, it’s the ethanol subsidies.

For background on Chris Christie’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Dr. Ben Carson’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Jeb Bush’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Marco Rubio’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Ted Cruz’z fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.

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Sunday, January 24, 2016

Growing Coalition of Ohio Citizen Groups Oppose Online Voter Registration



A Coalition of Citizens Groups
Opposes Online Voter Registration, S.B. 63

January 24, 2016

Dear Legislator:

S.B. 63, the online voter registration bill, has raised concerns that it may further threaten Ohio's voter integrity. Ohio's elections process has been under some scrutiny over the last several years due to an increase in reported voter fraud cases, specifically (SOS Post-Election Voter Fraud Report May 2013) (SOS Report December 2013 Non-U.S. Citizens Register and Vote in the Battleground State of Ohio). Franklin County reported more than ninety cases of double voting in the 2012 Presidential Election as reported in the Columbus Dispatch in June of 2013.

In addition, nineteen indictments were handed down in Hamilton County. A state-wide citizens' audit of Ohio county BOE's conducted in the aftermath of the 2012 Presidential Election also indicated a number of irregularities and suspicious activity through eyewitness accounts. What is clear in these reports is that voter fraud is a growing problem in the battleground State of Ohio, and more measures need to be enacted to get out in front of the problem. Although some legislative election reform measures have been passed addressing some of the concerns, more work needs to be done. Ohio is a must-win state for the campaigns, and there are those who would seek an advantage by trying to game the system.

To open online voter registration at this time would be ill-advised. There are a number of questions and concerns regarding the security of the online access and process of voter registration that S.B. 63 proposes. What the general public has learned over the last two years is that no website is secure from hackers.

When the secure websites of The Pentagon, The White House and other government agencies have been hacked, then the suggestion that this website will be safe is purely conjecture and wishful thinking. The list is long of major corporate websites that assured their users their websites were secure, yet have been victimized by the hacker and information contained therein disseminated. The list of victims reported by the media is long indeed, including the industries of banking, entertainment, major retailers, and others. They have all had their websites hacked and information stolen.

When it comes to the value of the voting process in our Republic, we need to proceed with extreme caution before the suggestion of online voter registration is seriously considered.This is no time for a cavalier attitude concerning the voter integrity process in Ohio.

At a minimum, implementation of any such legislative proposal should be delayed until 2017, and a trial run should be conducted to assure that the security of the website can be verified before full implementation.

The following groups oppose S.B. 63 in its current form.


Christopher Long, President, Ohio Christian Alliance

Jeff Malek, Medina County Conservative Coalition

Ralph King, State Coordinator, Tea Party Patriots

George Momirov, Columbus 9.12

Tom Zawistowski, Portage County TEA Party

Cody Ragle, The Coalition

Lisa Woods, MCFAN (Medina County Friends and Neighbors)

Chuck Laughlin, Geauga County TEA Party

Arzella Melnyk, Grassroots Rally Team of Ohio

Linda Barry, Auglaize County Patriots

Steve Salvi, Ohio Jobs & Justice PAC

Ohio Christian Alliance is a non-partisan organization dedicated to promoting Judeo-Christian values in American government. Ohio Christian Alliance does not endorse any particular candidate or political party. OCA provides educational materials, including voter guides and scorecards.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

GOP debate link

Art credit: WashingtonPost.com

The GOP debate this evening at 9pm is hosted by Fox Business Channel. Here's the website link to watch either a live stream online or on cable. For those who subscribe to a cable provider, just type in your zipcode at the link for options.

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Wednesday, January 13, 2016

GOP campaign financing: Part 5

Photo credit: Politico.com

GOP campaign financing: Part 5 ~ Ted Cruz
Senator Ted Cruz is running as an outsider presidential candidate, and he appeals to conservatives. He missed the SOTU speech last night because he was in New Hampshire campaigning. He referred to the SOTU as the State of Denial Address, a view probably shared by most Tea Party Patriots. A number of Ohio conservative activists already support or have endorsed his candidacy. Where do Cruz's campaign funds come from?
The Federal Election Committee report (click on the candidate’s name on the linked page) shows that almost all of the $26 million that he has raised comes from individuals. But is that the end of the story?
The FEC page for Jeb! Bush shows that the lion’s share of his $24 million comes from individuals. Yet we already know that Jeb! has received over $100 million from funds contributed toSuperPACS. Those funds aren't showing up on the FEC page for Jeb!
So are any SuperPACs funding Cruz’s campaign? Yes. Club for Growth, as reported by CNN
Cruz is a natural fit for the group, which is unafraid to battle in Republican primaries. One of the main donors to the Club for Growth's super PAC, New York hedge funder Bob Mercer, gave $11 million to start his own super PAC backing Cruz, Keep the Promise I.    
Sundance at Conservative Treehousealso reported on the relationship between Mercer, the SuperPAC, and Breitbart Media Group: 
The Breitbart Media Group is financially backed and funded by Hedge-fund billionaire Robert Mercer. Mercer was/is the originating financial backer for the Ted Cruz Keep the Promise” (KtP 1, KtP2 and KtP3) Super-PACs.  Mercer is also the financial backing behind Cambridge Analytica.
Cambridge Analytica is the receiver of the contact information provided to Breitbart when you participate in their on-line Presidential Poll.
In essence, when you participate [in] the Breitbart poll, you are sending your personal information into a data-base controlled by the proprietary interests of Robert Mercer, Cambridge Analytica. The Ted Cruz campaign then uses the data collected to fund-raise on behalf of the Campaign.
There are more links in that report; just scroll down. Breitbart is an excellent resource for news, opinion, and analysis. But like most media, including alternative media, it can be influenced by major financial backers.
For background on Chris Christie’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Dr. Ben Carson’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Jeb Bush’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Marco Rubio’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.

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Monday, January 11, 2016

Stop the Push for On-Line Voter Registration in Ohio!

Action Alert by Medina Tea Party Patriots
January 10, 2016
Online voting being pushed in committee
The Government Accountability and Oversight Committee plans to hold its first hearing on the proposed online voter registration system this Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. This same committee refuses to hear testimony on House Bill 189, the Ohio’s Voter Photo ID Law. It’s interesting that the predominantly Republican committee is pushing forward on legislation that does nothing to prevent fraudulent voting and may even add to the problem, but won’t consider legislation that will help reduce fraud.
We need your help! Ohio’s Secretary of State, Jon Husted, wants online voting rushed through committee and passed through the legislature. Please contact the committee members on Monday and ask why they are pushing online voting in our state but refusing to push requiring photo IDs when voting.
Members of Government Accountability and Oversight Committee
Representative Tim W. Brown (Committee Chairman) – R
District 3
Phone (614) 466-8104
Fax (614) 719-0006
Email Representative Brown
Representative Louis W. Blessing III (Committee Vice Chairman) – R
District 29
Phone (614) 466-9091
Fax (614) 719-3583
Email Representative Blessing
Representative Kathleen Clyde – D
District 75
Phone (614) 466-2004
Fax (614) 719-3968
Email Representative Clyde
Representative Jim Buchy – R
District 84
Phone (614) 466-6344
Fax (614) 719-3977
Email Representative Buchy
Representative Jim Butler – R
District 41
Phone (614) 644-6008
Fax (614) 719-3591
Email Representative Butler
Representative Michael F. Curtin – D
District 17
Phone (614) 644-6005
Fax (614) 719-6963
Email Representative Curtin
Representative Timothy Derickson – R
District 53
Phone (614) 644-5094
Fax (614) 719-6953
Email Representative Derickson
Representative Doug Green – R
District 66
Phone (614) 644-6034
Fax (614) 719-6988
Email Representative Green
Representative David Leland – D
District 22
Phone (614) 466-2473
Fax (614) 719-6961
Email Representative Leland
Representative Robert McColley – R
District 81
Phone (614) 466-3760
Fax (614) 719-3975
Email Representative McColley
Representative Dorothy Pelanda – R
District 86
Phone (614) 466-8147
Fax (614) 719-6983
Email Representative Pelanda
Representative Ryan Smith – R
District 93
Phone (614) 466-1366
Fax (614) 719-6987
Email Representative Smith

Sunday, January 10, 2016

GOP campaign financing: Part 4

Photo credit: brandchannel.com

GOP campaign financing: Part 4 ~ Marco Rubio

The money behind Marco Rubio’s campaign is easy to track, thanks to the extensive digging already done by Michelle Malkin. For those of us who find Rubio a fresh face, good in front of the cameras and microphones, but troubled by his campaign pledge to oppose amnesty, only to co-sponsor the infamous Gang of Eight legislation, Malkin’s title “Open borders money backs Marco Rubio” says it all. From the article:

Here’s what you need to know:

Facebook, Microsoft and Silicon Valley back Marco Rubio. Mark Zuckerberg is a social justice CEO who panders to Hispanics with his pro-amnesty, anti-deportation advocacy; Facebook is an H-1B visa dependent company working hard to obliterate hurdles to hiring an unlimited stream of cheap foreign tech workers. It’s no coincidence that Facebook’s lobbying outfit, FWD.us, was waging war on Sen. Cruz online this week in parallel with Sen. Rubio’s disingenuous onstage attack.

The D.C. front group, which Zuckerberg seeded in 2013 with nearly $40 million during the Gang of Eight fight, has consistently provided political protection for Rubio as he carried their legislative water.

FWD.us’s GOP subsidiary, “Americans for a Conservative Direction,” showered Rubio and pro-illegal alien amnesty Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., with millions of dollars in media ad buys. The group also funded a deceptive, $150,000 ad campaign for immigration sellout Rep. Renee Ellmers, R-N.C., which falsely claimed she opposed amnesty to help her fend off a primary challenge. In all, FWD.us spent an estimated $5 million on TV and radio spots in more than 100 GOP districts before the Senate passed the Gang of Eight bill in June 2013.

Paul Singer backs Marco Rubio. The hedge fund billionaire announced his support for Rubio in October. Amnesty is and always has been a top agenda item for Singer, who helped fund the National Immigration Forum along with fellow hedge fund billionaire George Soros. NIF propped up a faux “grass-roots” initiative of religious conservatives, dubbed the Evangelical Immigration Table, to lobby for the Gang of Eight.

Read the rest here.  

For background on Chris Christie’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Dr. Ben Carson’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Jeb Bush’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.

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Friday, January 8, 2016

Why Does the Ohio Republican Party Fear Their Own Voters?

For Immediate Release
January 8, 2016
Contact: Diana Price
Why Does the Ohio Republican Party Fear Their Own Voters?
Voters across the country are reaching record levels of frustration, mistrust, and outrage. They are tired of backroom establishment politics continually ignoring and thwarting the voice of the people. Yet today, the Ohio Republican Party (ORP) is choosing to stick a finger in the eye of the Ohio electorate.
The ORP is doubling down on shady politics that is sure to further divide voters, even more so than the establishment GOP already has. In a deliberate move attempting to ensure a predetermined outcome, the Ohio Republican Party State Central Committee is voting to endorse a bottom tier candidate, Gov. John Kasich, instead of respecting the will of Ohio voters and allowing the primary process to take place.

The ORP, run by State Chairman Matt Borges, a hand-picked crony of Governor John Kasich who has already been convicted of improper use of public office, this underhanded stunt should come as no surprise," stated Ralph King, State Coordinator for Tea Party Patriots. "By voting to endorse in the GOP Primary process, the ORP only reinforces the perception across the U.S. that the voice of the voters no longer matters."

Instead of fearing their voters, the Republican State Central Committee should respect the primary process and act as a neutral unifier of Republican voters against the eventual Democrat nominee. Today the Ohio Republican Party shows establishment politics and political cronyism is more important than the voice of the people."
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Thursday, January 7, 2016

GOP campaign financing: Part 3

Photo credit: dailymail.co.uk

GOP campaign financing: Part 3 ~ Jeb!
Full disclosure: Conservative Treehouse (Sundance) is a blog that has come out in full support of Donald Trump. However, Sundance’s analyses of and reporting on other campaigns have been in depth and educational, especially when it is difficult to identify the donors. From an August 29, 2015 blog post:
It is always important to remember, in 2015/2016 there are two types of funds for each candidate now: traditional campaign finance (which has rules, laws and limits – albeit changed this year), and Super-PAC funding (no limits).
The campaign funding behind Jeb Bush falls primarily into the Super-PAC category, in this case, a Super-PAC called the Right to Rise Super PAC. 
From an earlier blog on August 16, Sundance reported that:
The Super-PAC [Right To Rise] that Jeb Bush constructed, well, Jeb and Tom Donohue, and Mitch McConnell and the Wall Street power brokers who planned the entire gig, prior to the announcement of his candidacy, have a plan.
And then comes the big question: “So who exactly is behind this Right To Rise USA Super-PAC?”
At least 20 individuals each wrote checks of $1 million or more to the super PAC. They include billionaire health care investor Miguel Fernandez, the group’s biggest donor; California billionaire William Oberndorf; Iranian-American diplomat Hushang Ansary and his wife Shahla; and hedge-fund manager Louis Bacon.
Right to Rise also got about 236 six-figure checks from several notable donors, including former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, Citadel Investment Group founder Kenneth Griffin and Houston businessman Robert McNair.  
Treehouse linked to a July 2015 Politico article that reported:
With help from two former presidents and hundreds of other wealthy Wall Street and K-Street donors, the pro-Jeb Bush super PAC raised a staggering $103 million in the first six months of the year.
The information at Treehouse and left-leaning Politico are consistent: Bush has the backing of Wall Street mega-financiers. The Bush campaign has been spending heavily on TV and direct mail. As of today, RealClear Politics shows Jeb is in 6th place (at 3.3%), behind Trump, Cruz, Rubio, Carson, and Christie.
For background on Chris Christie’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
For background on Dr. Ben Carson’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.
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Friday, January 1, 2016

GOP campaign financing: Part 2

   Photo credit: losangeles.cbslocal.com

GOP campaign financing: Part 2 ~ Dr. Ben Carson
Up until today, a look at Dr. Ben Carson’s fundraising showed a campaign burning through lots of cash, with a campaign structure that was less than transparent. Both Politico and The Atlantic covered some of these aspects.  
But with the news today that the Carson campaign has lost top staff and up to as many as 20 staffers, those issues may be academic. From ABC News via Conservative Treehouse
ABC News has more –  After announcing his resignation from the Ben Carson campaign, former campaign manager Barry Bennett tells ABC News that the staff changes were revealed in a scheduled call this morning. The main change Carson wanted to make was with his Communications Director Doug Watts, Bennett says.
Bennett told the Republican presidential candidate on the call he would not support that decision and told Carson “it’s time for me to go.” Bennett said Carson was surprised and asked him to think about staying on as his campaign manager to which Bennett quickly told him no.
“[Carson] tried to blame some of the problems in the campaign on silly things and I said Ben we all know the root of our problems, let’s not pretend it’s not Armstrong Williams,” Bennett told ABC News on the phone. “Ben said I’ll talk to him, I’ll talk to him. But I’ve heard that for nine months now.”
Who is Armstrong Williams? According to a report last August on The Hill:
One of the most influential people in Ben Carson’s political orbit has no role in his actual campaign. 
Armstrong Williams, 56, is a black conservative radio personality, a real estate investor, TV station owner, publisher and former political operative for figures as diverse as the late Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-S.C.) and Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
Williams does not fit the traditional profile of a man-behind-the-candidate, yet he looms over the 2016 hopeful's world. 
In interviews with Carson, as well as top current and former campaign officials, the message is clear: Carson and Williams come as one.
. . .
Williams’s forceful personality is in stark contrast to that of Carson's, who has an other-worldly calm. He has been known to step in as Carson’s enforcer when the presidential candidate would rather eschew confrontation. He has a reputation as a fixer.
Armstrong Williams, Ben Carson’s business manager and advisor said the neurosurgeon “is the only true authentic Evangelical Christian in the race.”
Oddly enough then, the cause of the resignations may relate to Williams’s support of Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam, as per a blog at American Thinker titled “Support of Farrakhan organization may force Ben Carson to separate from longtime adviser".
For background on Chris Christie’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.

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