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Gidney N Cloyd

(19,690 posts)
Sat Jul 25, 2015, 02:05 PM Jul 2015

IL. Gov. Rauner campaign used gift cards to help get out vote

http://www.sj-r.com/article/20150723/NEWS/150729756
Gov. Bruce Rauner's campaign handed out thousands of dollars in gift cards to people who helped get supporters to the polls during the November election, prompting questions about transparency and whether recipients should be considered volunteers or campaign staff.

The Chicago Tribune reported that the campaign says it bought 5,145 Visa prepaid gift cards in denominations of $25, $50 and $75. The gift cards weren't mentioned in campaign finance reports filed with the state until July 13, when the Republican's political committee noted that it received $54,713 in April and May through "liquidation of previously purchased asset — redemption of gift cards." The campaign hasn't disclosed who got the cards or whether anyone received cards totaling $150 or more — the level at which Illinois campaign finance laws requires that compensation to workers be reported.

snip

Sarah Clamp, spokeswoman for Rauner's campaign, said the campaign reported the gift cards correctly. "The campaign is only responsible for reporting when the campaign makes an expenditure and did this by reporting the purchase of gift cards," she said.

snip

His campaign said it considered the gift cards property and that transferring them to workers didn't need to be reported. Larry Noble, a former general counsel for the Federal Election Commission, said debit cards are "as good as cash," and the campaign should have reported which workers got the cards. While campaigns often reward volunteers with pizza or coffee, Noble said giving gift cards "definitely is odd."


Rauner is like having Scott Walker and the Koch brothers rolled into one person.
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IL. Gov. Rauner campaign used gift cards to help get out vote (Original Post) Gidney N Cloyd Jul 2015 OP
I live in Illinois -- this 'thing' called Rauner is completely vile Freelancer Jul 2015 #1
Buying the vote one gift card at a time... Historic NY Jul 2015 #2
I'm hoping the editorial boards of the Trib, Sun-Times, Herald, et al will realize they got punked. Gidney N Cloyd Jul 2015 #6
This &*%^#@* is pissing me all the way off! Stellar Jul 2015 #3
Could an argument be made that Citizens United would allow this? procon Jul 2015 #4
Let's face it, that argument will be made. But... Gidney N Cloyd Jul 2015 #5
The cards were given to people who got murielm99 Jul 2015 #7

Freelancer

(2,107 posts)
1. I live in Illinois -- this 'thing' called Rauner is completely vile
Sat Jul 25, 2015, 02:21 PM
Jul 2015

I would take Blago over this sack of s#@% any day.

Historic NY

(37,401 posts)
2. Buying the vote one gift card at a time...
Sat Jul 25, 2015, 02:21 PM
Jul 2015

still it wasn't enough to help Quinn. The people will eventually realized they got punked.

Gidney N Cloyd

(19,690 posts)
6. I'm hoping the editorial boards of the Trib, Sun-Times, Herald, et al will realize they got punked.
Sat Jul 25, 2015, 05:53 PM
Jul 2015

The owners knew what they were getting but I still believe the journalists can draw lines. OK, John Kass is a shameless conservatoady but the editors probably have standards.

procon

(15,805 posts)
4. Could an argument be made that Citizens United would allow this?
Sat Jul 25, 2015, 03:39 PM
Jul 2015

Seriously, if the Supreme Court decision laid out the doctrine that money is a form of speech and corporations and millionaires can legally buy the politician of their choosing, then why can't a politician buy voters?

Gidney N Cloyd

(19,690 posts)
5. Let's face it, that argument will be made. But...
Sat Jul 25, 2015, 05:44 PM
Jul 2015

...I think the deal here is that these are expenses by the actual campaign committee and there are still rules about how that kind of money may be spent.

And short of that, it just looks bad. It looks like more like buying votes than buying/influencing opinions.

murielm99

(30,554 posts)
7. The cards were given to people who got
Sun Jul 26, 2015, 04:10 AM
Jul 2015

voters to the polls. It seems to me that each person who was given a card should have been listed in the report to the Illinois State Board of Elections. Each card represents an expenditure. The ISBE should have caught that.

I used to file the reports for our county Democratic party. When we had a fundraiser and sold raffle tickets, we had to report each winner, even if they won only $50.00. We had to report property transfers, too. If computers or other equipment was donated or transferred, it had to be reported, and its value stated in the report.

Larry Noble is right. But his FEC position has nothing to do with it. The FEC has even stricter rules than the ISBE.

Unless things have changed very drastically in the last few years, Rauner's people need to submit an amended report, or face, at the very least, some stiff fines.

I'm not a lawyer, but I sweated out a lot of reports to the ISBE. I called them any time I was not sure about what to declare. They were helpful. I was honest.

Maybe we should just give the Ruiner enough rope and he will hang himself soon enough. He will go to jail.

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