Have You Seen My $40,000?

Would you notice if someone gave you $40,000? Would you remember if you gave that sum to someone else? I ask because the Beauprez campaign and the Colorado Republican Committee can’t seem to keep track of such things. According to filings with the Secretary of State, the Beauprez campaign reported [PDF] receiving $100,000 from the Colorado Republican Committee PAC – $80,000 on Oct. 6 and $20,000 on Oct. 10. But, the CRC reports only one $60,000 contribution to Beauprez on Oct. 6. Who’s having the “accounting” problem?
Click the image to view the entire PDF report

It’s hard to understand how either could misplace $40,000. The CRC lists only 13 expenditures in its last report, and other than the $60,000 donation to Beauprez, they were all for $1,200 or less. One would think the folks at the CRC would know if they’d dropped another 40 grand – especially since they had less than $30,000 left at the end of the reporting period. So, another $40,000 contribution to Beauprez would have put them in the red.

The Beauprez campaign reported receiving 1,293 contributions. Perhaps those are more difficult to keep track of? Possibly. But, more than 99 percent of those were under $500. Only eight contributions were over $500 and only two – those from the CRC – were more than $1,000. Could the Beauprez campaign mistakenly document it received $100,000 instead of $60,000 and not notice?

This isn’t the first time Colorado Confidential has found problems with the CRC’s financial reporting. Two weeks ago we reported about several instances during the past year when the committee appeared to lose or gain thousands of dollars from one reporting period to the next. And, a related committee, the Colorado Republican PAC, reported financial data to the Secretary of State that actually belonged to the Colorado Republican Committee. And, until yesterday, a total of five weeks of reporting from the CRC wasn’t available on the Secretary of State’s Web site. Whew! It’s hard to keep up with all the financial hanky-panky of the GOP committee.

So, why do we require political committees to report financial data if there’s nobody policing their accuracy? A few dollars off here and there is one thing, but when the largest contributions to a gubernatorial campaign can’t be accounted for, that’s something else. And, should such a mistake, if that’s what it is, be easily fixed by the filing of an adjustment report? No harm, no foul, and no questions asked? We might have campaign finance laws, but where is the oversight?

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