Oregon Congressman Challenges the Shadowy Group Spending Against Him

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Monday, September 27, 2010 at 9:52 am

Yet another outside political group with practically zero paper trail (as of yet) is spending heavily against the Democrat in an obscure and heretofore uncompetitive House race in Oregon — and the affected Congressman, Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.), isn’t taking it lying down.

The group, called Concerned Taxpayers of America, emerged out of the blue last Tuesday with a substantial ad buy attacking Rep. DeFazio and touting his Republican challenger, Art Robinson. Neither DeFazio nor Robinson, for that matter, claimed any knowledge of the group or its backers:

Robinson’s benefactor has spent more on advertising on his behalf than his own campaign has. But there seems to be no record of an organization called Concerned Taxpayers of America, outside a few filings at the Federal Election Commission. The filings list a Capitol Hill address and the name of a treasurer, Republican political consultant Jason Miller.

The group will have to file a quarterly report to the FEC in October, but DeFazio decided on Friday that he wanted to know who was attacking him sooner and decided to march over to the Capitol Hill townhouse listed as the group’s address and ask them himself. With a Washington Post and Huffington Post reporter in tow, DeFazio rang the bell and peered in windows, waiting for a while until, finally, a young man answered:

He said he was a renter who was not acquainted with Concerned Taxpayers of America or its treasurer Jason Miller.

Miller later acknowledged that the young man at the house does indeed work for him. “He’s a junior staffer who didn’t know what to say when he got ambushed by DeFazio,” Miller said. “He shouldn’t have said that.”

There’s also an amusing video documenting the whole affair, and the staffer lying with impunity about his affiliation, here.

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19 Comments

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farmrdave
Comment posted September 27, 2010 @ 3:27 pm

Sounds like my kind of organization, They are spending their money on what it was intended for instead of paying for a office filled with bean counters. Hmmmmm, maybe that is what this years election is all about.


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youmustbejoking
Comment posted September 27, 2010 @ 7:00 pm

The people have a right to know who is footing the bill on ads designed to affect the outcome of an election. If they won't stand up and proclaim who they are in the light of day they have no place in the election process. Too bad we can't vot on US Supreme Court members who are responsible for opening up this can of worms. I hope voters take that into account when going to the polls and refuse to vote for candidates that will not insist on disclosure from those running ads to influence their race.


Tuci78
Comment posted September 27, 2010 @ 8:36 pm


I agree that “The people have a right to know” who might be trying to buy (or rent) an incumbent politician like Peter DeFazio – a salaried employee of the U.S. government. Consider, after all, the big bucks in PAC money DeFazio has been getting from sources way to hellangone outside his district ever since he first slimed into Congress.

He's on the payroll for which we “The people” are being gouged, and he has duties as an officer of our federal legislature. A public servant – like the oh-so-dedicated Peter DeFazio – is a public property.

Or so the saying goes. Can't say that for his challenger, Dr. Art. Robinson, who is just a private citizen.

But folks outside Dr. Robinson's campaign who are trying to send Peter DeFazio a bit prematurely to his retirement paradise in New Zealand by putting an end to his malignant incumbency in November?

Hey, anybody's got a perfect right to put forward messages to persuade the people in Oregon's 4th District that it's time to put Pete DeFazio out of their misery.


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angelatc
Comment posted October 9, 2010 @ 7:41 pm

I have a novel thought – maybe the candidate should talk about the issues instead of wasting time worrying about who dares to disagree with him.

In fact, maybe all political donations should be anonymous! Then maybe no candidate would be beholden to special interests!


youmustbejoking
Comment posted October 9, 2010 @ 10:40 pm

Problem with that is it doesn't stop candidates from being beholden- it would just keep us from knowing who they are and it would also make it impossible to make sure no one person contributes more than legally allowed. Plus, with the ads being run by these shadow groups under the guise of non-profits are distorting and downright lying about the oppositions record and a candidate must act when they are being branded with lies. Better yet would be to pass legislation that would take corporations out of the person status so they can't be funding million dollars donations. Corporations don't deserve person status.


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