Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Solving the FEC problem?

I received an email from Ewert for Congress this morning, obviously in response to the email I sent last night to all of the 5th District Democratic Chairs with email addresses on the state party site. I also carbon copied the message to the State Party Chairman Richard Cranwell, who has endorsed Bern (although the letter exchanged somehow cannot be located). My message to them said:

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Dear 5th District Democratic County Committee Chair (and State Chairman Mr. Richard Cranwell),

While Bern Ewert contends that he has registered with the Federal Election Commission (FEC), the FEC has no record of his filing. Since the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) lists candidates who have filed with the FEC and updates their list each Monday, Bern’s name (which had somehow mysteriously appeared) has now been removed from the list of Virginia races—namely our own VA-05 race. Al Weed is currently the only candidate listed that is opposing Virgil Goode on the site. If you want to verify this information, go to my new Internet blog Honesty Counts (especially when it comes to political candidates) and look under “LINKS.” You’ll find a link that will search the FEC filings for “Ewert” and another that points to the current DCCC Virginia Races page. When Bern does file, I’ll update my blog to reflect that.

If you do go to my blog, check out some of the posts I’ve written, research I’ve done and the specific questions I’m asking the candidates. Please make comments, tell me your hot button issues, and/or suggest other questions to be asked of Bern and Al. The more we know about our candidates and their plans for our future, the better informed we can be—whether it’s at the 5th District convention or on Election Day. And, once our Democratic candidate is selected in Buckingham, I’ll continue to research and post my findings about both him and Virgil Goode.
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The response I received from Bern’s campaign (and as an FYI reply from a 5th District county co-chair) was:

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Dear Democrats,

It has come to my attention that there are some concerns with my filings of campaign forms with various governmental agencies. In January I filed statements of economic interest with the US House of Representatives and sent declaration of candidacy forms to the Federal Election Commission. I got a receipt on 2/1/06 from the House and they told me by phone that my forms were filed on time. As a first time Federal candidate, I did not realize that I should have received separate confirmation from the FEC, but apparently they didn’t receive my forms. When I realized that they had no record of my filing, I resubmitted the forms to them. I was told today that it takes the FEC approximately two weeks to get the filing into their public information system, so I expect that they will be processed soon. I’m faxing a copy of the forms to my Democratic opponent, so he too is aware of my filing.

I appreciate people’s concerns with these matters. If anyone has any questions, please direct them to me. I hope that we can now all focus on the substance of this campaign and all work together to replace our current congressman. I pledge to focus my campaign on my positive record of improving our cities and counties and improving the lives of our citizens and focus on a positive message for change. A Democratic Party united around a candidate with a strong record and a positive message is the only way to win against the incumbent.


Bern Ewert
Democratic Candidate for Congress

Fifth District
, Virginia

Paid for and authorized by Ewert for Congress
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My response to both Bern’s campaign and the county co-chair was:

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Since some of our problems with Virgil concern campaign fundraising violations, having a Democrat who is in violation of campaign election law is not good. It shows that we have some of the same problems as the Republicans, which is not the message we want to send 5th District voters.

I will note this email on my blog—and we’ll have to see when it actually happens. Since you can call the FEC to check filing status and submission dates, I’ll also make sure that the person who had called the FEC personally to check the filing information is aware of this. He might want to call them again, so that all of us are finally on the same page.
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So, we’ll just have to see what the research and fact finding mission says, won’t we?


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