Thursday, September 18, 2008

Arrogance 101: A Lesson by House Democrats

Last Friday Republican State Chairman Chris Healy filed a complaint with the State Elections Enforcement Commisson against Democratic State Representative Tom Kehoe (D-Glastonbury) for distributing legislative reports as campaign material while going door-to-door in his district, a violation of state campaign finance law.

The materials Kehoe used are printed at the expense of taxpayers and are prohibited by law from being pinted or mailed after July 15th in an election year.

While to some there may seem to be no difference between the trash politicians fill our mailboxes with in an election cycle, and the trash they fill our mailboxes with during the rest of the year, the line is drawn in the law.

Kehoe denied that it was illegal to do what he did. Guess what? He's wrong.

"They were not printed or mailed after July 15th and I was under the impression that they're informative and useful to people," he said. Useful to him, I suppose.

For low-rent politicos like Tom Kehoe, I suspect it isn't enough for the state to have passed legislation allowing his ilk to use taxpayer funds for campaigns, and create a campaign finance system where even those who oppose the use of taxpayer funds to pay for their campaigns have no chance to compete... no no... on top of that he needs to use OTHER taxpayer funded items to further his political career.

So, does this bilk the taxpayer to a large sum? No. Is it that big a deal in the great scheme of things? Probably not... it is likely a small offense. But the fact that he has done this knowing the letter of the law as an attorney and a legislator, and his response to the accusation, should tell you everything you need to know about third-rate, bottom-of-the-barrel politicians like Kehoe.

They are arrogant. They think they are special. They are above the rules they make for everyone else. And it is snakey shit like this that makes everyone love those bad-breathed, mismatched jacket and tie politicians.


mccommas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mccommas said...

Hey give State Rep. Kehoe a brake! I think he should get a Profile in Courage Award.

We all know those taxpayer funded brochures were re-election propaganda. You should read State Senator Donny Williams lovely lavender ones!

Kehoe is making a statement. He must be protesting the practice. No one is that stupid.

Chris MC said...

Headless -
What is an acceptable mode of distribution of this literature?

If I find a Legislator's literature at the public library after July 15 is it a problem?

How about if it is in City Hall on a table with other public information in printed form in mid-August?

If they are distributed by a friend or neighbor to others in town in mid-September, is that a violation?

Headless Horseman said...

Chris... c'mon man, give us all a break.

Hewas using his report as a campaign piece witing mssages on it asking for their support in November.

I know you get it. The fact that you want to defend it is silly.

Chris MC said...

I'm actually asking what the rule is, because I've actually experienced the first and second instances. In the third example, I'm wondering if there is a(nother?)loophole.

This stuff has always been taxpayer-funded campaign literature, irrespective of who is in the office, mode of delivery, or time of distribution, IMHO. I'd be OK with eliminating franking, er, frankly.

mccommas said...


The rule is -- as I think you already know -- he can not be mailing them out 30 days before an election. That's the LAW.

The Law should be 90 days but I am certain 30 days is the time limit. Those assholes typically send them out right before the deadline.

For him to hand them out in the time period is a violation of the law. He should be fined.

He could use all the same information on them in an original campaign flyer paid for by his committee.

That would fly.

The rules way to lax as it is. Its in your face abuse of power.

I hope he loses. Who is he running against anyway? I might mail him or her 20 bucks.