Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Did Umholtz Follow the Law?

Rich Miller stirs the pot today with GOP hopeful Stu Umholtz.

Stu wants to be our next Attorney General.

However, as I first noted back in November on CapitolFax Blog, Umholtz closed down his campaign committee in 2000 and hasn't filed a report with the State Board of Elections in over five years.

Anxious readers want to know:

Is Umholtz the worst fundraiser to ever run for statewide office, or did he ignore the law?


Blogger grand old partisan said...

I know you are anxious to break this non-story, Yellow Dog, but perhaps you should think twice before you spread your unsubstantiated accusations of campaign finance reporting violations by Mr. Umholtz. You are right that his PAC closed after the 2000 election, and he did not file and reports during the 2004 election. But according to the state board of elections, only 64 Democratic nominees for State’s Attorney across the state filed finance reports in the same election. Now, either the Democrats didn’t even have a nominee for state’s attorney in almost 40% of the counties in the state, or – like Mr. Umholtz – those nominees, for whatever reason, did not reach the fundraising threshold for filing requirements.


3:19 PM  
Blogger Yellow Dog Democrat said...

Like I said, GOP, either he is the worst fundraiser ever to have run for statewide office, having raised or spent less than $3000 in five years, or he failed to follow the law.

Granted, I'm not en expert on campaign finance laws, but it seems to me that if the Tazewell County Republicans sent even one mailer that included Stu Umholtz's name, that should have been reported as an in-kind contribution, am I right? And I'm guessing that with almost 100,000 voters in Tazewell County, that would have pushed Umholtz over the $3000 reporting requirement.

6:21 PM  
Blogger grand old partisan said...

You're right Yellow Dog, you certainly aren’t an expert on campaign finance law. Neither am I, to be fair, but I do know that if the Tazewell County Republicans sent even one mailer that included Stu Umholtz's name, and the expense for that mailing was itemized on the reports for the Tazewell County Republican Central Committee, then, no, it should not have been reported as an in-kind contribution for Umholtz.

To the point that Umholtz is a poor fundraiser: if he didn’t need to raise thousands of dollars to win re-election in 2004, then why should he have? Why should candidates be raising more money than they really need to win? I suppose that is a bit idealistic, but I hope it’s a point you can appreciate. However, am I worried that his lack of serious fundraising experience in the past will hurt him in this campaign? Of course. But for my purposes today, that is beside the point. I am taking issue with your implication that Umholtz has violated the law when you have nothing more than circumstantial “evidence,” and when so many Democratic candidates for the same office in the same year would be equally guilty using your logic.

7:07 AM  

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