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Answers to campaign finance questions

December 22, 2012
Michael Burt, Marshalltown , Times-Republican

I recently read an letter by Bob Forbes in which he raised several ethics questions concerning the Allen Burt for Iowa House campaign, several local businesses and Burt Farms.

In his article, Forbes accused Burt Farms of illegally supporting the Allen Burt Campaign. However, this is completely and utterly false. According to the ethics committee in Des Moines, which monitors all Democratic and Republican campaigns run in Iowa, a corporation cannot contribute to a campaign. The reason Burt Farms ( a corporation) was paid was so that they were not illegally allowing the Allen Burt Campaign to use their tractor without the tractor being rented (which would be illegal).

Bob also questioned the memo on the check, which read "tractor expense for parades" and wanted to know if it was for fuel or for use of the tractor. Just as the check read (tractor expense for parades) is what it was for. That covers everything. There is no need to make this situation complicated.

As for the parking lots in which the tractor sat for the summer, the Allen Burt campaign was given permission to park and advertise in these private lots. Since when did advertising on personal property become "questionable" in any way? Yard signs have been a candidate's primary way of getting their name out to the public for many years, and I don't think anyone has an ethical question with bumper stickers either. So to answer your question, Bob, no, these didn't need to be recorded as "in-kind" contributions.

Bob, the next time you have issues with the way a campaign is run and operated, maybe check your facts and know the rules before you publicly slander another candidate, their business, and their supporters. I hope this cleared up your "questions" and at the same time, made those who contributed to the Allen Burt campaign in vote and money glad they did.

 
 

 

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