I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Reformy Campaign Finance Machine: Over $1/4 Million and Rising!

My previous post about the secret, coordinated, reformy campaign finance machine is going viral, which is great: I'm hoping people read it and say: "Hey, I've seen those names before!" Let me know if your local school district or your state legislative district has seen an influx of money from these reformy folks.

The sad truth is that, despite all the campaign disclosure laws that have been passed, our ability to track campaign contributions at the state and local level is inadequate. Tools like FollowThe Money are great, but they can't keep track of the giving that takes place in jurisdictions that still allow handwritten reporting forms.

So here's a first attempt to describe the influence of the "Reformy 8" on education politics. Judge for yourself whether there is a pattern that suggests coordination in the giving for these local school board, state school board, and state legislative races; the links to the sources are under "Jurisdiction":

Jusidiction Candidate Greg Penner Lydia Callaghan Arthur Rock Dave Goldberg Sheryl Sandberg Alan Fournier Jennifer Fournier Kent Thiry TOTALS
Perth Amboy, NJ Better Schools Now! $8,000 $8,000 $8,000 $8,000 $10,400 $10,400 $10,400 $63,200
Oregon Tobias Read $5,000 $5,000 $5,000 $6,000 $2,500 $2,500 $26,000
Colorado Kerr, Newell, Pettersen, Rodosevich, Hamner, Lee, Young, Hodge $3,175 $3,175 $3,175 $2,775 $2,780 $2,375 $2,375 $19,830
New York Jeffrey Klein $2,000 $2,000 $2,000 $1,000 $1,000
Nevada Alexis Gonzales-Black $2,000 $2,000 $7,500 $1,000 $10,000 $1,000 $1,000 $5,000 $29,500
Nevada Allison Serafin $2,000 $2,000 $5,000 $3,500 $5,000 $1,000 $1,000 $5,000 $24,500
Indianapolis Caitlin Hannon $5,000 $5,000 $5,000 $1,000 $2,000 $3,000 $21,000
Indiana Mary Ann Sullivan and Tim DeLaney $10,000 $10,000 $10,000 $2,000 $2,000 $34,000
New Orleans Sarah Usdin $2,500 $2,500 $2,500 $2,500 $2,500 $1,100 $1,100 $2,500 $17,200
Ohio Ryan Jolley $3,000 $3,000 $3,000 $1,000 $700
California Joe Coto $3,000 $3,000 $3,000 $1,600
Contribution Totals $45,675 $45,675 $54,175 $24,375 $29,980 $20,375 $18,375 $25,900

Total Reformy Machine Contributions: $264,530.

Mind you: this is merely what I have been able to confirm. Who knows how much money has been funneled into races that aren't showing up in the campaign finance databases?

The race that still astounds me here is the Perth Amboy school board race: $63,200 for a school board race in city of 50,000?! That's just crazy - isn't it? Hmm...

What was it about Perth Amboy that attracted this level of money from seven of the "Reformy 8"? What is it about all of these races that binds these reformy plutocrats together?

Thinking... stand by.

Dave, I wonder what all these people have in common...

1 comment:

Mrs. King's music students said...

First, congratulations on going viral. This blog is an equalizer for the workerbees in NJ schools.

I looked up Better Schools Now in Perth Amboy which appears to represent the interests of hispanic population there. In fact, this group was in favor of sending admins to Puerto Rico in search of bilingual teachers. Is it possible that a diversity of special interest groups like this one are approaching reformy plutocrats for funding and not the other way around?