Well, I never had a chance to say hello to Tim Eyman this morning… he refused to make eye contact with me, and rushed out as soon as his Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) enforcement hearing was over.
Ah, well. Screw him.
As it turns out, Tim only got a slap on the wrist, a fine of $150.00 each for two incidents of failing to report an in-kind contribution ($300.00 total.) Looking a bit haggard and unshaven — and lacking his usual shit-eating grin — the early morning drive down to Olympia for an 8 AM hearing seemed to be worse punishment than the punishment itself.
The enforcement was in response to a complaint I jointly filed on behalf of TaxSanity.org with my fellow Eyman-watchers, Steve Zemke of Taxpayers for Washington’s Future, and Andrew Villeneuve of Permanent Defense. I stand by my allegations of conspiracy to defraud contributors, but clearly the PDC is not the proper forum to pursue justice. If you provide a detailed complaint of an isolated violation they will investigate and respond accordingly. But they seem unwilling (or lack the jurisdiction) to connect the dots.
Essentially, Tim’s whole public charade of separating his initiative campaigns and his personal compensation fundraising into two separate Political Action Committees is a total sham. Funds raised for one are used to support the activities of the other, and vice versa. This, despite the unambiguous disclaimer that appears in his most recent fundraising email:
Voluntary donations to I-900, the Performance Audits of Government Initiative, will be used to qualify this important taxpayer protection initiative for the ballot. A different political action committee, “Help Us Help Taxpayers,” raises money for a compensation fund for Tim Eyman, Jack Fagan, & Mike Fagan for their effective political work on behalf of taxpayers. These two campaign committees are kept separate and donations and expenditures for each fund are publicly reported every month.
What he doesn’t tell you is that absolutely 100 percent of HUHT’s activities are paid for out of VWMC funds. And, that money raised this fall for HUHT, is currently being used to subsidize the early fundraising activities of VWMC.
(Did I ever mention that Tim Eyman is a lying, thieving, blowhard?)
Anyway, perhaps we’ll just have to take our evidence someplace else — like a prosecuting attorney’s office — for the PDC is apparently too damn busy protecting the integrity of our system from the real villains. You know, like Rev. Paul Benz, who lobbies for social justice issues on behalf of the Lutheran Church, and was fined $100 today for reporting late on his lobbying fees for November, 2003… a month he didn’t have any lobbying fees.
Who the hell files a PDC complaint against a Lutheran minister for reporting late on absolutely nothing? I don’t know, but I did find out who tattled on the two unfortunate teachers who were fined $500.00 each this morning for distributing R-55 petitions to fellow teachers on school property… why, the Evergreen Freedom Foundation of course. (I’d call EFF a bunch of mean-spirited, vindictive bastards… but Marsha might shoot me.)
Meanwhile, Tim Eyman, a professional liar with a documented history of flouting the public disclosure laws, is fined only $150.00 per violation. And last spring, when the PDC ruled he had filed his January reports three months late, he was fined nothing at all. But I guess Tim deserves the benefit of the doubt… unlike that shady Rev. Benz.
Tim should rest assured that he shouldn’t rest assured, for we’ll continue to monitor his public disclosure filings, just to keep him honest. Hell… somebody’s got to.