Thursday, March 03, 2005

FPPC Investigation Dogs Schwarzenegger's National Fundraising Efforts

As Bob Salladay reports in the Los Angeles Times, on Friday, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger attends the first of a series of high-priced fundraisers around the country to raise money for his 2005 California ballot agenda and 2006 re-election campaign. Friday he is feted by Bush mega-donors Mercer Reynolds and Carl Linder in Cincinnati, then on to New York on Monday to be wined and dined and lavished with millions by Governor Pataki's rich friends, then on to the St. Regis Hotel in Washington D.C., where apparently no one has the stature large enough to be the official host for Arnold.

All this so that national donors can further their agenda in the state of California. Despite the willingness of national donors to no doubt give Arnold millions of dollars, the Guv is limited by California law to collecting donations of $22,300 for each of his committees. Despite this law, Arnold and the Citizens to Save California ballot committee, which was started to pursue Arnold's ballot agenda, have been seeking sums in excess of $100,000 from donors.

In response to the complaint filed with the FPPC by TheRestofUs.org, Arnold and his minions filed a lawsuit against the law which limits the committee's fundraising. Seems he likes those trial lawyers after all.

Arnold has said that he doesn't think people mind that he is selling the state to carpetbagger fat cats and that no one has asked him to stop the illegal fundraising. This comes from the same guy who got into office by promising he would sweep the special interests out of Sacramento before he breaking all his predecessor Grey Davis's fundraising records (in addition to a promise or two).

The people of California deserve a true reformer, not one with special interests riding shotgun, not one with big money flying co-pilot as they traipse about the country opening the door for rich people in Ohio, New York, and D.C. to influence the process by which the people of California make their laws.

So Arnold, please: stop the illegal fundraising.

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