Posted: 6:00 am Friday, July 25th, 2014

Complaint claims Jason Carter held ‘illegal’ fundraiser; Democrat punches back 

By Greg Bluestein

carter-funder

A former Republican lawmaker filed an ethics complaint claiming a star-studded fundraiser boosting Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jason Carter is “grossly unethical and illegal.”

Carter’s staff later counterpunched by leveling two ethics charges against Deal’s campaign.

The initial complaint, dated July 17, contends that Carter, a state senator, violated rules barring lawmakers and statewide officers from accepting contributions or pledges for campaign cash while the Legislature is in session. It was filed by John Douglas, a former state senator.

The fundraiser in question was held March 23 in New York, three days after the legislative session ended, and featured Carter’s grandfather, former president Jimmy Carter, as well as REM front-man Michael Stipe.

Gov. Nathan Deal’s campaign and its allies took issue with invitations sent out before the session gaveled to a close that sought pledges of at least $1,000. The invitation, pictured above, noted that it was “paid for and authorized by Carter for Governor, Inc.”

Carter’s campaign called it a “pathetic and transparent attempt” to deflect attention from ethics questions facing Deal, including the recent revelation that the head of the ethics commission claimed Deal’s aides threatened her to make complaints against him disappear.

“The complaint is utterly without merit,” said campaign manager Matt McGrath. “We followed both the spirit and the letter of the law, as we have throughout the campaign. The event in question took place after the legislative session had concluded, and Georgia campaign finance law allows candidates to raise for political parties.”

The campaign has argued that the invites were legal because the fundraiser went to benefit the Democratic Party of Georgia and not Carter’s campaign. The event went forward as planned, though it’s not certain how much money it raised. Republicans say Carter banked $24,000 from New York donors the same weekend, and GOP spokesman Ryan Mahoney questioned whether he lined up those commitments during the session.

In his complaint, Douglas said that Carter’s defense is “completely bogus and mocks current Georgia law” because the event didn’t appear to benefit other Democratic candidates. Douglas, now a Newton County commission member, said Carter should be forced to return the money raised from the fundraiser immediately.

“If this event was to benefit Jason Carter, Connie Stokes and Greg Hecht, it would have been legitimate,” wrote Douglas, mentioning candidates for lieutenant governor and attorney general. “It plainly was not. The invite was clear proof that this event was purely to benefit Jason Carter.”

McGrath said the complaint was “laughable” given that Deal attended a fundraiser during the legislative session with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who heads the Republican Governors Association. That group has spent more than $1.5 million on ads boosting Deal and attacking Carter.

He filed an ethics complaint targeting that fundraiser Friday that highlighted it listed Denise Deal, the governor’s daughter-in-law and a fundraiser for his campaign, as a contact. A second complaint questioned a fundraising invite for annual Deal event, Grilling with the Governor, sent during the session.

Deal’s camp said Friday the first event was designed to help Republican organizations and not specifically the governor’s campaign. It said the invite to the grill-out was a save the date, not a solicitation, and that there was a “very deliberate” effort to ensure no one could donate or RSVP.

Deal spokeswoman Jen Talaber described both as an attempt to use the ethics committee “to play politics with taxpayer dollars” by deflecting attention.

The complaints come amid a broader flurry of ethics activity. The left-leaning Better Georgia, one of Carter’s staunchest defenders, was targeted by two ethics complaints filed by residents with ties to the GOP. One was rejected while the other is still pending.

Campaign finance rules are complicated and these types of issues are oft-litigated over months and even years. But questions about Carter’s event could give the governor a comeback when Democrats target the ethics questions  swirling around his campaign. And Carter’s camp signaled it was more than happy to keep the debate focused on ethics.

 

219 comments
UnbiasedObserver
UnbiasedObserver

Only $24,000?   LOL   Thats pretty lame.  Ive seen more than that raised in a single night for a little ole high school football team. 

JedFrost
JedFrost

Is he a turkey-baster baby? I thought Amy was of the Lesbian persuasion?

peewilly
peewilly

Who wants or needs a Chicago politician in Georgia?

Vote for someone from this states that cares and not a Washington insider.

A vote for Carter or None is just that,a vote for the Washington agenda. that  we all know-sucks


Now if you are an illegal, hispanic, black ,gay,feminist, terrorist supporter,criminal,ant- government type then vote for who supports you........Demorats. Good Day

findog
findog

Just too bad we could not have one election where the actual issues were discussed instead of the poll tested phrases that fit on a bumper sticker.

notagain
notagain

I hope,I wish the people would vote for the people,by voting some Democrats in office.Not that Democrats will be better,but you will get better Government if the elections can go Dem. or Repug.I would say same if the monopoly was reversed.

Carter and Nunn good choices.

dreluv
dreluv

Perdue sent 1000 jobs overseas after he file bankruptcy and he also said bail out Wall Street.

Why the teaparty not jumping on Perdue about bail out Wall Street.

dreluv
dreluv

Tax payer have to pay $3 million dollar for Nathan Deal ethic violation and how much Jason Carter have to pay tax payer $0..Why would you defend a crook such as Nathan Deal who tax payer have to pay for his ethic violation..How much tax payer have to pay for Nathan Deal snow days..

No way in the world Nathan Deal need to be govermor...I would whether vote for Frosty Snowman then Nathan Deal.

peewilly
peewilly

Landmark Poll has Carter ahead of Deal


Isn't that the same Poll that had Kingston ahead of Purdue?


I sure am glad Deal is not leading in that Poll. hehehehe


You just wait till Deal gets after Carter and he continues with illegal fundraisers he sponsored.

Purdue will do the same with None and her terrorist supporters that she is funded by.

Oh it will be fun

EdUktr
EdUktr

The event was “Paid for and authorized by Carter for Governor, Inc.”

How in the world do you ignore that?


Ralph-43
Ralph-43

Looks like we have entered the silly season.

peewilly
peewilly

@dannyx

come on dude,that's weak, like your candidate.

Looks matter in an election,you might know that, but then you are on that other ticket.

What I am saying  is Purdue and Deal are from around HERE/ Georgia.

These other two might as well be foreigners for most reasonable Georgians.


peewilly
peewilly

@DRELUVE


The real Deal has nothing to worry about.

Jason Carter is not from these parts and is riding on his Grandaddy's name which isn't a good one.You know...the 2nd worst president of all time' or 1st

I see the ads are already on TV that will identify him for what he is..Obamas best friend.

As far as Mary,the woman who hides behind another name,not hers,she hasn't a chance in hell of winning.

You know looks are important, she has Nunn

LHardingDawg
LHardingDawg

Dang, I can't believe the AJC put this in the open section and not behind the pay wall. Good job.

Ultraman8
Ultraman8

$1000 a person and they raised $24K- wow! there are more people in the bathroom during an Atlanta Dream game than that.

leefrommeeks
leefrommeeks

nothing new same old name calling liberals on this blog

dreluv
dreluv

Look like Nathan Deal don't have nothing else do but blame Jason Carter for his own ethic violation..

Nathan Deal is running scare he might lose in November.

GaLatino
GaLatino

So... Deal's campaign has been searching for something, yeay ANYTHING, that would deflect from the stench of his corruption, and THIS is the best they come up with??? 


They might have been better off letting this one go.  It's so stupid and silly it will hurt them in the end.

Jefferson1776
Jefferson1776

No laws were broken, unless you are talking about Gov Deal.

peewilly
peewilly

@Lithonia guy

you said..."What world do u live in where race doesn't matter?"


my answer...A world we all strife for but one that you will not let happen. It appears race is everything to you and you might have racist thoughts. Oh My.


Quandry
Quandry

In other words...

WHY DO YOU DESERVE OUR VOTE?

WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO FOR US?

Quandry
Quandry

@ JacketMan

You said it... AMEN.....

Why the distractions on both sides.... TELL US WHY WE SHOULD VOTE FOR YOU AND NOT WHY WE SHOULD NOT VOTE FOR THE OTHER GUY.

Hey - that strategy just might get you elected...... it's not rocket science.....

JacketMan
JacketMan

Other than the flyer stating IT (the flyer itself) was paid for, and authorized by, the Carter campaign, as required by law, in no way does it state that the fundraiser was FOR Jason Carter. The invitation clearly STATES it was "A fundraiser to benefit the Democratic Party of Georgia's Georgia Victory 2014 Fund".

Obviously there were/are MANY Democratic candidates running BESIDES Carter, in various races besides the Governor's office, and they'll be benefitting from the Georgia Democratic Victory 2014 Fund as well.

Once again, rather than talking about FACTS that SHOULD matter to the voters, like jobs, the economy, and education, we have an attempt to distract from the race. Why?

Quandry
Quandry

Both campaigns know the Republicans and Democrats are going to vote their party line….

What they are trying to do is get enough independent voters to vote their way.

How about telling the independent voters about what you will do.

What are your ideas?

td1234
td1234

@notagain All electing Carter would do is turn the state capital into another DC. 

Voting for Nunn is just another vote for Obama or Harry Reid. 

Ralph-43
Ralph-43

@dreluv  In their past lives Perdue and Romney were in the same business - stuffing their own pockets - sending middle class jobs overseas - and borrowing money in other people's names to make a failing company look solvent right before they bailed.  They think this will work for public government as well  Guess who gets rich and who gets the bill.

anothercomment
anothercomment

Hopefully the tea party will vote for the libritarian and give Michelle the race easily.

RadicalRuralDem
RadicalRuralDem

@peewilly Please post about 20 more main threads on here so people know how you really feel.

honested
honested

@EdUktr 

By ignoring it as that means nothing.

Did you have a point?

Ralph-43
Ralph-43

@peewilly  Wee Willy - you appear to be quoting Governor Deal - "he is not one of us."  Those days are over son.  Georgia is moving into the big time.  Strap on or get left behind.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@peewilly  "These other two might as well be foreigners" code word for "outside agitator".  Where have I heard those words before?

RadicalRuralDem
RadicalRuralDem

@peewilly Read the above comment carefully, Metro ATL females, and remember this when you vote. Sexist xenophobes are the primary voting bloc for Nathan Deal and the primary people to whom he answers. According to him, you're property: "YOU don't have a last name; you have your husband's name and that's that. You don't have a choice in my backwards world - you'll answer to what you're told".

DannyX
DannyX

@peewilly- "You know looks are important, she has Nunn"


So what you are saying is Perdue is the much better looking candidate, you have a big ol' crush on him, and that's why you are voting for him?



Eustis
Eustis

That was his cut; not the total

RadicalRuralDem
RadicalRuralDem

@GaLatino Yeah, it's quite hilarious that they held virtually the same type of event and then gave the same reasoning as Carter's campaign, all the while saying the Carter campaign's explanation isn't legitimate. I think they're genuinely so scared now that they're just going to try to crash both Carter and themselves into the ground, dampen enthusiasm and by default win in such a negative scenario.

lithoniaguy
lithoniaguy

@peewilly 

As a 50 year old black man I can't afford your luxury of being color blind. Being color blind could cost me my life.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@Quandry It's not a distraction for me I have gotten use to it so I know what's up.  It's more like a good horror, thriller and fiction movie all wrapped into one.  When the election is over it ends up being a love or domestic violence story after they all get together.

AuntieChrist
AuntieChrist

@JacketMan Par for the repuppy chorus, who never let facts get in the way of an opportunity to whine and whimper about some imagined wrong.

Charles50
Charles50

@JacketMan Great points.  I guess this lawsuit is an example of what happens when the GA education budget continues to be cut.  Grant it John Douglas hasn't been in school for a long time, but obviously education wasn't much better then either.

Ralph-43
Ralph-43

@td1234 Did you mean preventing the anti-tax crowd from destroying the country is bad?

Ultraman8
Ultraman8

@lithoniaguy @peewilly it would be nice for once if the NAACP members would stop asking "what are you going to do for black people" when they need to do something for EVERYONE!

Kamchak
Kamchak

@leefrommeeks 

its nice to hear from merry ole england

If by "merry ole england" you mean Decatur then yeah, sure.

CuriousPrime
CuriousPrime

@Ultraman8 @lithoniaguy @peewilly Dude, the NAACP was founded by WHITE PEOPLE, and is a civil rights organization for all people.  When  you find a person who does not have some color, consider them of not of this world.