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Aug 07 2013

Sarah Palin’s Super PAC Scam

Like Michele Bachmann, Sarah Palin has a Super PAC. And like Bachmann, Palin’s PAC spends money on almost nothing but perpetuating itself and funding her travel and other expenses. Ben Jacobs at the Daily Beast has some of the details.

But because Sarah Palin’s political action committee is dedicated primarily to promoting the political profile of the former Alaska governor and former VP nominee, it can get away with spending more than it takes in—and doling out nearly $97 to Palin’s inner circle for every $1 that went to elect Republicans.

Over the first half of 2013, SarahPAC took in $460,000, but spent more than $495,000. Despite its stated purpose of supporting like-minded candidates, it donated to only one—giving $5,000 to Jason Smith, a conservative Republican backed by the NRA and pro-life groups who won a special election in Missouri’s Eighth Congressional District in June by a margin of 67–27.

In contrast, the group spent almost $484,000 on fundraising, research, speechwriting, and high-end travel. This is a comedown from the 2012 cycle, when SarahPAC raised eyebrows for spending more than $4.8 million on consultants while doling out $298,500 to candidates…

But SarahPAC seems to be especially focused on paying its consultants, even by contemporary standards.

The biggest individual beneficiary of Palin’s largesse was SarahPAC’s treasurer, Timothy Crawford, who made $80,500 as consultant for fundraising and compliance. Others who profited off the group include Rebecca Mansour, the aspiring screenwriter behind the website Conservatives4Palin. Her firm, Aries Petra Consulting, made $38,000 for speechwriting. Andrew Davis, a longtime Republican operative and Palin adviser, netted nearly $35,000 for research. SarahPAC also paid Carol Ryan and Marilyn Lane, two women from Wasilla, Alaska, $2,500 a month apiece for “part-time clerical work.”

Nice work if you can get it.

9 comments

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  1. 1
    Larry

    Palin is a grifter and the rubes are willing to be taken. In other news, the sun rose today and Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead.

  2. 2
    fifthdentist

    A recent poll showed that among six hypothetical Republicans v. Hillary Clinton, all but one would be preferred over Clinton. Clinton was preferred over Palin.
    Oh, the poll was done in Alaska.

  3. 3
    Mr Ed

    Does this happen on the left too? Last year we saw Newt Gingrich Inc. sell email lists and services to Newt Gingrich 2012, basically laundering -in a legal way- campaign contributions. Super PACs were most effective at paying large fees and salaries to their founders. It just seems that the polarization of politics is being used to fleece contributors and I’m wonder if I’m a victim too or is this more common in conservative circles?

  4. 4
    Geds

    Rebecca Mansour, the aspiring screenwriter behind the website Conservatives4Palin

    If anyone could write a movie that makes Sharknado look like Jaws, I’m sure that Rebecca Mansour would top the list.

  5. 5
    raven

    Repeat of Bachmann comment from yesterday.

    Not a problem.

    High end car makers, private jet manufacturers, and jewelers need to eat too.

    The USA would be way ahead if all that money is siphoned off. Please, make it so. It’s far better that way than if they actually spend their money trashing the USA.

    (This assumes the Democrats aren’t quite so greedy and actually spend campaign funds on campaigns. I realize this might be a fond hope rather than realistic.)

  6. 6
    raven

    It is heartening that most of the money fundies donate to their vaguely humanoid toad leaders is spent on high living; expensive vacations, fast cars, private jets, and so on.

    Money spent that way is money not used to wreck the USA.

    If any fundies are reading this, check your bank balance. Send it all to one of your grifting leaders. Palin, Hagee, Gingrich, Crouch, etc..

  7. 7
    raven

    Not sure if I should be laughing here.

    We donate money every year to political candidates and PACs. These are of course, the reverse of Palin, the Tea party, and fundie death cults.

    I really hope the Democrats and their PACs aren’t equally as greedy.

  8. 8
    Dr X

    It is heartening that most of the money fundies donate to their vaguely humanoid toad leaders is spent on high living; expensive vacations, fast cars, private jets, and so on.

    Their PACs and their churches are indistinguishable.

  9. 9
    Quantum Mechanic

    Hey man, I’d rather see that money go into her pockets and have the (R)’s lose elections than have it propel some Tea Partier to a federal office. If nothing else, the pure irony of Sarah Palin contributing in part to the failure of the theocons and related movements (more than before, I mean) would be worth any little nagging feelings of unfairness on the Universe’s part. After all, no one ever promised me “fair”, as my father is so fond of pointing out.

    Besides, isn’t there a saying about stupidity being its own punishment?

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