Thursday, March 30, 2006

Is There a Pattern Here?

Howard Kaloogian's campaign seems to have an integrity leak of monumental proportions. First, came his mislabeled Baghdad photo. It could have been an honest mistake. Still, it seems pretty sketchy that a photo that Kaloogian felt demonstrated the pro-terrorist bias of main stream journalists could have been posted for months at Kaloogian's Move America Forward site and then for months more at his campaign website, without any oversight by the candidate. Whoops.

Today, we read that Kaloogian's campaign had distributed a mailer that implied that conservative State Senator Tom McClintock endorsed Kaloogian. McClintock says, no, he doesn't endorse Kaloogian. Whoops again.

In the San Diego Union Tribune, we read about another "mistake" on the Kaloogian website. Apparently, someone decided that a group called the California Pro-life Council had endorsed Kaloogian. They hadn't and Kaloogian had to have their "endorsement" removed from the site. Another whoops.

Sacramento conservative talk radio host, Eric Hogue, has some historical perspective on what appears to be Kaloogian's problem getting his photos and endorsement straight.

Howard Kaloogian's campaign is being run by Republican Strategist Sal Russo. This is the same Russo who operated GOP Gubernatorial Candidate Bill Simon's race against Gray Davis in 2000. A campaign that featured an alleged photograph of Davis receiving a campaign check from the state's CCPOA 'in the governor' office'...problem, it was proven that it was NOT the governor's office!

Simon lost that election by 5%, and many point to the 'photo-flap' as the cause.

How about that, Sal Russo, Kaloogian's partner in Move America Forward and a principal in the Republican public relations firm of Russo, Marsh + Rogers, made a false photo claim while running the Simon campaign in 2000. Maybe whoops isn't the right expression.

Hogue has another complaint about the Kaloogian campaign. This one is a lot more critical than just misleading voters who bogus endorsements or doctored photos. Apparently, Move America Forward's membership list was made available to the Kaloogian campaign. Now Kaloogian is a director of the non-profit, non-partisan organization and Sal Russo is its chief strategist. It would be unethical and possibly violate Move American Forwards tax exempt status if it were to work directly with specific political campaigns. When someone signs up for information from Move America Forward they are not signing up with the Kaloogian campaign. Or are they?

Again from Eric Hogue via California Republic:


I have been on MAF's e-mail list for a long time. When Howard announced he was running for Congress, I suddenly started receiving e-mails and updates from his campaign, even though I never signed up for them. They continue to this day. So it appears that MAF either gave or sold their e-mail list to Howard."

Nice racket...campaign donations going to MAF for non-profit, fund stunts and chairman endorsements, or...MAF "donated" the email list to Kaloogian, which means non-profits collecting cash (material) and using it to support a former founder in a congressional race.

Isn't this the race to replace "Duke" Cunningham? Hmm.

From another political campaign and contender for the 50th Congressional...

"This is typical Kaloogian sleaze. If he did not pay fair market value to MAF for the list, then they are breaking the law."

One mistake earns the benefit of the doubt. Continual mistakes and oversights, that's a pattern. A pattern of dishonesty and deception.