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GOP Files Complaint Against DGA Affiliate

by Christine Stuart | Aug 14, 2014 1:41pm
(9) Comments | Commenting has expired

The Connecticut Republican Party filed an election complaint Thursday against a super PAC affiliated with the Democratic Governors Association.

The complaint alleges illegal coordination between the group called Connecticut Forward and Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s re-election campaign.

According to the State Elections Enforcement Commission, Connecticut Forward spent more than $91,200 in late July on pollsters and consultants to help augment Malloy’s publicly funded campaign. It has since spent $12,000 on production of a television ad against Malloy’s Republican opponent, Tom Foley, another $6,000 on a website, and $4,200 on consultants.

Connecticut Forward was created by the DGA after a federal judge ruled that the group lacked standing to bring a lawsuit against the State Elections Enforcement Commission. The DGA sued the state back in April in an attempt to find out whether Malloy’s fundraising for the group would limit its ability to spend its money on his re-election campaign.

U.S. District Court Judge Janet Hall concluded that the DGA’s fear the state would accuse it of illegal coordination with the Malloy campaign was unfounded since the law was not based solely on the statutory scheme.

A month later the DGA created Connecticut Forward, a tax-exempt organization that can make unlimited expenditures in support or opposition to a candidate, as long as those expenditures are not coordinated with a campaign.

The Republican Party alleges in its complaint Thursday that Connecticut Forward and the Malloy campaign did coordinate the more than $91,000 in consulting and polling services.

“The expenditures DGA made by and through Connecticut Forward are in fact illegal coordinated expenditures and are not independent expenditures,” the complaint reads. “It is undisputed that the DGA made expenditures in 2010 to support Governor Malloy’s election, that Governor Malloy is a member of the DGA, that Governor Malloy solicited significant contributions for the DGA and the that the DGA formed and made expenditures through Connecticut Forward for the purpose of benefitting Governor Malloy’s re-election efforts.”

The party requested a full investigation to determine whether Malloy should receive any more public funds during the 2014 election cycle.

“This claim is utterly baseless, totally unsubstantiated, and unbelievably reckless,” Devon Puglia, a spokesman for the Democratic Party, said. “There are fewer specifics in this claim than the GOP’s policy proposals — and that’s next to nothing.”

Danny Kanner, a spokesman for the Democratic Governors Association, issued a statement calling the complaint “frivolous.”

“While it’s nice to see erratic millionaire Tom Foley is taking time off from blaming workers for losing their jobs and driving his company into bankruptcy, he and his Republican hatchet men should use the opportunity to come clean about the devastating impact his hidden policies would have on middle-class families instead of filing frivolous legal complaints,” Kanner said.

The Republican Governors Association headed by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has pledged to support Foley’s campaign, but has not created an entity similar to Connecticut Forward. The SEEC reports show that no money has been spent by the RGA in Connecticut since 2010.

In July, during a stop in Greenwich, Christie said he didn’t know how much money the Republican Governors Association would dedicate to the race, “but we don’t pay for landslides and we don’t invest in lost causes.” He said he would dedicate the resources necessary to get Foley’s campaign over the finish line.

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(9) Comments

posted by: Noteworthy | August 14, 2014  2:24pm

Poor Puglia - With all due respect, you can claim a lack of specificity but the circumstantial evidence is deadly and toxic. There are people in Connecticut prisons on less “circumstantial” evidence. You would have the public take leave of its senses and common sense too? I think not. The DGA and the Democratic Party along with its spokespeople are trying to be too cute by half. Where’s all that hand wringing now over outside, corporate expenditures?

posted by: art vandelay | August 14, 2014  2:45pm

art vandelay

The Connecticut Republican Party’s time and effort would be better spent on matters critical to winning this election.  Their priorities should center on unseating well established Democrat career politicians who are running unopposed.  They should also concentrate on obtaining more urban votes instead of writing off Bridgeport, New Haven, Hartford, & New London.  They are never going to change the socialist/progressive agenda promoted by the Democrats unless they start winning seats in the House & Senate.  That’s where their priorities should be.

posted by: joemanc | August 14, 2014  3:49pm

Hi Devon - what exactly has Malloy done for the middle class? I just heard the other night that in my once prosperous small town, the food pantry for the needy has been wiped bare this summer, and mostly by struggling younger families. You guys need to get out of your bubble.

posted by: Commuter | August 14, 2014  8:59pm

Puglia claims that these charges are baseless, and so they seem. But the question is, why would the CT GOP file baseless claims such as these?

Here’s why: The Foley campaign is committing actual violations.

The purpose of the GOP complaint is to muddy the waters - it’s the last defense of con men like Foley ‘hey, everybody does it’.

Foley and his campaign aren’t denying that they are doing wrong, they are trying to control the damage of getting caught at it.

posted by: Commuter | August 14, 2014  9:00pm

Here’s the story

posted by: Bethy | August 14, 2014  9:04pm

Bethy

At this point, all i can do is laugh .... it appears someone is bloody frustrated and has no case…i am on the floor..Vote Malloy/Wyman 2014 Folks…

posted by: QuestionMark | August 14, 2014  9:19pm

@art vandelay: Easier said that done. Getting GOP votes out of lifetime Democratic urban centers will be a challenge for Team Foley.  Malloy is taking credit for heavy welfare money going to the large urban cities.  Our tax money is paying for “Smooth Dan’s votes.”  Foley is focused on working the urban centers for votes from people that Malloy has kept in “the poor house” by not producing jobs for the urban populace, and keeping them on welfare for “shameless votes.”

posted by: shinningstars122 | August 15, 2014  6:11am

shinningstars122

Thank you Citizens United!!!

Folks and don’t fool yourselves for a second Foley will be into this just as deep as Malloy will be.

Remember he is going public financing this campaign too.

All hail the high and mighty, and secretive, super pacs!

Plus it is where the majority will get all your “talking points” from anyways.

posted by: QuestionMark | August 15, 2014  12:09pm

@shinningstars122:  Let’s remember voters like you got the state in massive debt and taxation by voting in ” Dannel Malloy the Politician” with absolutely no business sense into office, which means we badly need a businessman in the governor’s chair this time. Smarten up, vote for Tom Foley, and put your conscience at ease. We all make mistakes, and now is the time for atonement.