Oops… he did it again. Washington State’s unOfficial Horse’s Ass, Tim Eyman, is polishing up his bad boy image with revelations that he has once again been caught diverting initiative campaign funds for personal use.
A couple weeks ago, through our sister site TaxSanity.org, I joined in a complaint to the Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) alleging (amongst other things) that over $26,000 reported in June as a printing and mailing expenditure for Initiative 864, actually paid for a fundraising letter on behalf of Tim’s “separate”, personal compensation PAC. We went on to suggest that Tim failed to properly report that the compensation committee’s operations are entirely subsidized by the initiative campaign committee.
The PDC has decided to launch a full investigation.
Tim didn’t help himself much in trying to explain away the discrepancies… in fact, despite initially claiming our complaint was “filled with lies,” he has subsequently admitted to all our charges. In a letter to the PDC, Tim confirmed that the June expenditure was indeed for the compensation fundraising letter, and went on to say that “our campaign committee pays for these mailings and the accounting and other costs associated with our compensation fund.”
Tim justifies these expenses, stating that “the letters sent on behalf of our compensation fund also benefit the campaign committee,” and twice describes his committees activities as part of “an ongoing, year-after-year effort.”
I couldn’t agree more. But… the logic works both ways.
Indeed, a stronger argument can be made that I-864 campaign activities benefit the compensation committee, as Tim explicitly solicits compensation funds by trumpeting his political mischief-making: “If you appreciate our past efforts and you want us to continue fighting for taxpayers, please send us a generous contribution.”
On the other hand, I can find no documented evidence that Tim has ever solicited contributions to his campaign committee on the merits of his outstanding achievements in personal remuneration.
Tim has now filed amended reports restating the purpose of the June expenditure, but making the ridiculous assertion that only 20% of the benefit from the compensation fundraising letter actually accrued to the compensation committee.
Tim can quibble over how much each expense benefits one committee or another, but it is now abundantly clear that these two committees are separate in name only… a rhetorical convenience Eyman uses to falsely claim that he is not compensated from initiative campaign monies. But every penny the campaign committee spends on compensation committee activities is a penny freed up to compensate Tim… that $26,000 expenditure was as good as writing Tim a check.
It is time for the PDC to dispel the fiction, force full disclosure, and then pass on the evidence to the appropriate prosecutorial authorities, so that our more serious allegations of conspiracy to commit wire-fraud and mail-fraud can be fully investigated.
Tim’s always yelling about the need for politicians to be held accountable. Well it’s time for him to be held up to his own standards. And to be hoist by his own petard.