Thursday, March 26, 2009

Just Wondering...

By Lisa Kaiser
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One question has been nagging at me for days: Why would Advocates for Student Achievement, a political action committee co-founded by a member of the MPS board, Bruce Thompson, and whose treasurer is a former MPS board member, Joe Dannecker, not submit campaign finance reports to the City Election Commission?

After all, ASA’s been around since 2007. The Shepherd reported on its first fundraiser back then.

Thompson and Dannecker have both run campaigns and surely must know that campaign finance reports are due throughout the year—in January to cover 2008’s activities, and then in February, just before the primary.

Why wouldn’t ASA want to officially report that, for example, MMAC held a fundraiser for ASA on Feb. 5, 2008, a full year ago? Sure, you can find that information if you run a Google search, but shouldn’t that become part of the public record?

Not sure if this counts as a campaign contribution, but I’m sure ASA was thrilled that the Greater Milwaukee Association of Realtors sent out a call for candidates who would want to work with ASA. If my sources are accurate, this call for candidates went out in October.

Then just weeks ago, the “ASA Executive Committee” sent out an e-mail asking for donations to three candidates who went through its training sessions—ReDonna Rodgers, Annie Woodward and David Voeltner. But, the ASA e-mail explains, if supporters wanted to write just one check, they could send it to the Milwaukee Fund for Public Education, a pro-voucher conduit that dumped $50,000 into candidates’ campaigns just before the 2003 election.

No, I can’t imagine why Dannecker and Thompson wouldn’t want to report that ASA has strong links to the pro-voucher, pro-privatization MMAC, Realtors Association and the Milwaukee Fund for Public Education. I just can't figure it out.

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