You Can’t Take it With You!

by Randall Stephens

BentonIt appears that candidate for Clark County Council (Dist. 2), Mary Benton can read the writing on the wall regarding the outcome of Tuesday’s primary election. She is emptying her campaign coffers in a last ditch effort to squeak through the primary.   The problem is it looks like neither she nor her campaign consultants read Washington Administrative Code (WAC) Sec. 390-17-300.
After a review of Benton’s PDCs it’s apparent that her campaign has spent almost all of the $16,399 contributed to the campaign.

Screenshot 2015-08-02 18.33.44

At first glance this looks like wise strategy.  Going all in for the primary is something candidates typically do.  The problem arises from the fact that several big contributors gave the maximum $950, or near to it, for both the primary and general election.
WAC 390-14-300 (4) & (5) state………

(4) Contributions for the primary election shall be accounted for separately from those for the general election, such that campaign records reflect one aggregate contribution total for each contributor giving in the primary election as well as one aggregate contribution total for each contributor giving in the general election.

(5) General election contributions shall not be spent for the primary election if to do so would cause the contributor of the general election contribution to exceed that contributor’s contribution limit for the primary election.”

 We can only wonder what strategy or explanation Benton can offer to address this apparent violation of Washington State election laws.



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