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Santa Barbara Politics, Media & Culture

Monday, October 24, 2005

The Ethics of Campaign Contributions

Her man at De la Guerra, Travis Armstrong, questioned candidates taking money from organizations or individuals that have interests before the City in an editorial this weekend. Although he couldn't quite get himself to praise the Slugger for giving back a check from SoCal Edison, he did wonder out loud about the apparent ethical question involved here:

A check of Mrs. Blum's financial disclosure filings at City Hall, for example, reveals a series of donations from attorneys, architects and consultants that do business before the city. In fact, developers and others employed in the land-use and planning industry in Santa Barbara are big supporters of many candidates.

Under Mrs. Blum's highly principled Edison standard, shouldn't some of these checks possibly be returned as well?

I say the standard should be if there is a scheduled, pending item on the agenda or one that is generally known to be coming soon -- a candidate should not take a contribution from the organization or individual. He was quick to question the SEIU's $7,000 donation to the Rev. Horton Heat but what about the Police Officers Association? or the Firefighters? Would any contribution at all be a pay back for a positive vote?

Candidates wouldn't be able to receive any money from just about anyone under standards that are too strict. Also, how much is too much and what about in-kind, independent expenditures? I agree that this issue bears scrutiny for any candidate -- but let's not selectively pick our examples. Contributions from the POA deserve just as much scrutiny as the SEIU.

4 Comments:

Anonymous internet press said...

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10/26/2005 1:44 AM  
Anonymous press radio said...

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10/26/2005 12:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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10/27/2005 2:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

why are all the post removed?

10/29/2005 8:41 PM  

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