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DFL files complaint over Rep. Leidiger speeding ticket
Mar 01, 2012 | 1922 views | 9 9 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
State Rep. Ernie Leidiger, a Republican from Mayer, faces a DFL complaint for allegedly using campaign funds to pay for a $178 speeding ticket.

Story here and more info here.
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iFederalist
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March 05, 2012
As a Typical Minnesota voter, this crap is maddening. We send our elected representatives to the capital to get the work of the people done. Most Minnesota voters are not far right wing, nor are they far left progressives. We are citizens that want the elected bodies to get the job done.

There is a reason why a state, as democratic as Minnesota, has a Republican controlled House and Senate now. Stop with the “gotch-ya” politics and get to work.

“The truth is that all men having power ought to be mistrusted.”

― James Madison

Liberty & Justice
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March 02, 2012
Is Brunette getting paid for attempts at damage control? If so, someone is deserving of a refund. What a joke. Its pretty straight-forward to see that both Ernie and his treasurer, Steve (who is also the local GOP Chair) consiously made the decision to use campaign funds to pay Ernie's speeding ticket. Thankfully the fact that he was driving with a suspended license got dropped or it would have been even more money. And what if he would have been held for court on the Suspended DL charge? Would the committee bail him out? Come on folks. What happened to the "rule of law" party? What a joke.
JohnBrunette
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March 02, 2012
There were several corrections to the originally filed report. On it some items were reported as non campaign disbursements that actually were campaign related. There were a handful of errors on a year long report. All were corrected, but the DFL chose to play games, and file a compaint over a report that had no impact.

Also, the suspended license was incorrect, which is why it was dropped in court.

Finally, since you use such a wide brush when painting political parties, I guess you assume all Democrats are cigar riding tramps, like Bill and Monica? Good to know where you stand I guess.
JohnBrunette
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March 01, 2012
More hyper partisan nonsense from the DFL. Nothing unusual to report.
blueheron121
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March 02, 2012
Hmmmmm usually Brunettes are a bit more sensible than the above comment indicates.

Hyper partisan nonsense? I don't think so. No politian has the right to use campaign funds for personal use and it is up to the citizens of this country to pay attention to how campaign funds are being spent. I would have to pay a speeding ticket out of my own pocket. Why in the world would I agree to a politician using funds that I may have contributed to for their own mistakes? Show's a decided lack of responsibility and accountability in my book.Let's try not to redirect a blatant misuse of monies entrusted to our politicians, be they whatever party and keep the accountability in the lap of the misuser.
JohnBrunette
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March 02, 2012
He did pay for it out of his own pocket. This was resolved before the complaint was even issued. The modified paperwork hadn't arrived yet. But that doesn't matter to the DFL.
brickcity
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March 03, 2012
Let's be very clear about what happened here, because Mr. Brunette is shading the series of events.

Rep. Leidiger paid the speeding ticket out of campaign funds and claimed it as valid expenditure on his 2011 campaign finance report (despite the fact it is not a valid campaign expenditure). Leidiger's treasurer, Steve Nielsen (who is also the chair of the SD 34 GOP) claimed that such expenses were considered "just another cost of serving".

Once this was publicized, Rep. Leidiger has modified his campaign finance report and has reportedly repaid the campaign for the funds (although we won't know that for sure until the 2012 campaign finance reports are filed -- next one is before the primary election)
JohnBrunette
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March 04, 2012
I'm not shading anything. There were several mistakes on the campaign finance report. After having filed the original report, the remaining items were discussed with several members, including myself, Ernie, Steve, and folks at the finance board. All of the corrections were in motion before the DFL made it's complaint.

It's part of the process. If you look at the front page of the report, you have the opportunity to file amendments. As soon as I mentioned that the problems were being addressed, some one ran off to the DFL to try to get a complaint in before the corrections were finalized and submitted. Rather than allow a normal iterative process to occur, the DFL and folks who dislike Ernie made it their top priority to get an ethics charge generated, where none was necessary.

It you were to go to brick city's blog page, you see a point where I said the corrections were being made, and then another blogger stating that he was going to try to rush a complaint together. Istated it was too late, that the corrections were in motion, but that only feuled the fire to rush to file complaint.

It's too bad so many have to be so petty, and not allow a volunteer like Steve, to get the chance to make the corrections without some need for partisan war games. I imagine we'll likely see blog entries that show actual timelines of events removed, and or modified, since the end game was always to railroad someone.
brickcity
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March 05, 2012
The "normal" campaign finance process is not supposed to be an "iterative" one. You're supposed to get it right the first time.

Sen. Ortman has never had to file an amended form in ten years of service, for instance.
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