Governor Martinez Not Alone in Violating Campaign Act

I guess, if everyone else does it, and the Secretary of State is in the same political party, there’s no harm done.

Common Cause urges investigation of Gov. Martinez

By Gwyneth Doland

Government Watchdog Group Common Cause issued this press release:

Following a careful review of New Mexico’s Campaign Reporting Act, Common Cause New Mexico (CCNM) has come to the conclusion that Governor Martinez may have violated this act when she used leftover campaign funds to pay for radio spots lobbying for a bill favored by her administration. CCNM has urged the Attorney General’s office to investigate this matter. “The Campaign Reporting Act places strict limitations on how campaign funds can be used,” said Steven Robert Allen, executive director of CCNM. “Funding this kind of lobbying advertisement seems to be a clear violation of this statute.” Allen added that he was puzzled by media reports that the Secretary of State’s office found no evidence that the Campaign Reporting Act was violated. Even more puzzling, according to Allen, is the assertion that numerous other candidates have used their campaign funds in the same manner (Albuquerque Journal, February 24, 2011). “My organization is intensely interested in instances in which this has occurred, because aside from some very narrow exceptions outlined in the Campaign Reporting Act, a candidate’s campaign funds are only to be used to fund a campaign for elected office,” Allen said. To the extent that any candidate is spending campaign money in a manner not listed in the statutory section that describes the lawful use of such funds (Section 1-19-29.1 NMSA 1978), CCNM has urged the Secretary of State to forward all such instances to the Attorney General’s office for investigation.

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