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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

So When Is Coordination Not Coordination?

If you support a candidate for office in California you can raise money on their behalf and receive contributions in excess of the maximums allowed for one individual to donate directly to a candidate. You can then campaign on their behalf, print brochures, run TV commercials, make phone calls, etc. provided there is no coordination between your independent expenditure committee (IEC) and the candidate's campaign itself.

Normally IECs are formed by unions, associations or other special interests that want to elect a certain candidate. In this situations it is easy to maintain the "wall of seperation" between the IEC and the candidate.

However one controversial IEC of late is one formed by the father and employer of a candidate. Bob Blumenfield is running for the Democratic nomination for the 40th Assembly District and his father political consultant Michael and employer Congressman Howard Berman have donated over $100,000 to the younger Blumenfield's campaign and claim there is no coordination. Though many wonder how an IEC run by the father and employer of a candidate could truly be considered independent.

More alleged evidence of coordination between the IEC and the Blumenfield campaign surfaced Monday as Blumenfield's parents were reportedly walking precincts for the campaign in an area surrounding the Blumenfield campaign office. A voter in the area received a personally signed campaign brochure from Blumenfield's parents, a scan is below:

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Anonymous Anonymous said:

Wow, what a scandal. Thanks, Stuart Waldman, for pointing out how shady it is for Bob's mom and dad to be campaigning for him. Whatever happened to that inheritance you said you would spend toward getting elected? Isn't that pretty close to the same thing? Or would it have been fairer in your eyes that Bob, too, had inherited the money? I pity that district to have a representative like you, you sick hypocritical slob.

May 27, 2008 3:36 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Berman is a long time scum why are you suprised?

May 27, 2008 4:38 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

I support McCrory because they're all tainted. The problem with Bob's fund and why we need public financing is because it is not just his dad but his boss who is very well funded.

May 27, 2008 4:40 PM  

Anonymous Scott R. Jacobsen said:

A perfectly wonderful candidate is Republican Armineh Chelebian. Considering she is running against a goofball that some consider anti-semitic.

May 27, 2008 7:32 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Wow. This is really insane. Aside from the cracks about McCrory or Chelebian, the reality is that Bob is completely violating the independent expenditure laws.

This is the district where Lloyd won because of a last-minute misstep by his opponent. If Stuart can take advantage of this insanely stupid move by Bob, then he will have one hell of an election night party.

May 27, 2008 10:58 PM  

Anonymous Kilgore Trout said:

You people need to realize that the district is all about 10 square miles. If Bob's parents aren't walking by his HQ then they'll get blamed for walking by his office, and if not there then for walking by his home.

Where exactly can his parents walk so that it doesn't seem coordinated when the district is so small?

3:36, good point. Waldman's money also came from his folks; the only difference is that his folks died first.

"Coordination" means sharing voter files and field plans, not having a BBQ together.

May 27, 2008 11:46 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Sorry Kilgore, but the point is that they were using one of his mailpieces. That's not legal.

May 28, 2008 7:10 AM  

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