July 13, 2016 — There’s little doubt that Karen Mathiak is the candidate of Georgia’s chiropractors. “This is an unprecedented opportunity for ALL chiropractors in Georgia to have a voice at the capitol,” PAC chair Dr. Brad Pizza writes on the Georgia Council of Chiropractic’s website. Mathiak is treasurer of the Georgia Chiropractic Association’s PAC, and more than 80 percent of her campaign donations come from the profession.
Dec. 9, 2014 — A complaint against a political committee supporting Gov. Nathan Deal may be dismissed without investigation tomorrow by the state ethics commission. An attorney for Real PAC, founded by two longtime friends of Deal’s, contends it didn’t have to file financial disclosures for the $970,000 it raised and spent in Georgia, nor did it have to operate independently of the governor’s re-election committee.
A review of campaign filings and other public documents, however, suggests the issue is not so clear-cut.
Jan. 14, 2013 — Trial lawyers, dentists and Realtors — perhaps Georgians’ three most-beloved professions — had the deepest pockets as state legislators convened today for 2013, an analysis of campaign disclosures shows. Between them, trade groups for those three professions donated more than $1.1 million to Georgia politicians and parties over the past two years.
Unraveling campaign finance and lobbyist spending reports can be difficult if you don’t know the lingo. Trade associations frequently create political action committees (PACs) with names that mask, intentionally or not, the special interests behind them. Others are known only by obscure acronyms; some use the same acronym. So, as we continue to shine a light on special interests’ influence in Georgia, we’ve compiled this quick guide to who’s who among the PACs
Sept. 4, 2012 — Glenn Richardson walked away from the Georgia Legislature with $220,000 in campaign funds to spend with little oversight. More than 2 1/2 years later, as he plans a run for the state Senate, he still hasn’t officially disclosed what he’s done with it. The former speaker of the House assures me, though, that he hasn’t taken a penny for himself. “I have received no checks from that,” said Richardson.
The Federal Election Commission, which regulates the flow of political cash, has been plagued by persistent gridlock on some key areas of campaign finance. Why’s that important? Because, as a new report shows, more money is coming in and much of it is flowing in through new and barely regulated groups.
Pundits predict a wave of anti-incumbency — fueled by tea parties, voters’ disgust with Washington and other factors — will sweep the nation tomorrow. That could happen in Georgia, but the folks who finance much of the political campaigning here are gambling millions of dollars that it won’t. Business groups, labor unions and other special interests doled out $8.4 million to Georgia candidates this year. Incumbents collected the lion’s share.
Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour‘s political committee collected $231,000 last quarter, far outpacing the $148,000 it had raised in the previous nine months. Barbour reported the donations not in Jackson, but in Atlanta, where state law allows unlimited corporate contributions to political action committees. Mississippi caps corporate donations to PACs at $1,000. The sky’s the limit in Georgia, where Barbour’s committee is registered. There, in a nutshell, is why political action committees love Georgia. Read on …
Questions raised about Sen. Balfour’s relationship with lobbyist Georgia loses $2.4M in federal transit money Investigation into N.Ga. judge started with jewelry theft DeKalb admits addresses deleted from 911 HUD says Augusta must pay back home grants ATL test cheating report delayed again Grade tampering reported at Savannah’s Beach High PACs stick with incumbents
Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine’s much-awaited ethics hearing was postponed today, but it may still be held before the July 20 Republican primary.
Former House Speaker Glenn Richardson‘s political fund, enriched last week with nearly $220,000 from a separate campaign account, can legally spend the money almost any way it wishes. “He could spend it on anything he wants to,” said Rick Thompson, former executive secretary of the State Ethics Commission. “If he wanted to pay his rent or buy an automobile through the MMV PAC fund, there’s no restrictions on what he can do … under the Ethics in Government Act.”
DeKalb kids denied chance at state swim meet Little banks shared risk, take big hit Senator’s claim that he was coached ‘in no way’ in doubt No downturn for PACs Buyers on hook after Kia dealership shuts doors EPD hearing set for coal-fired plant in Early County Another view: Georgia incentives are bad business