Two Colorado-based Republican political organizations are in hot water for allegedly failing to file required campaign finance reports with the Internal Revenue Service and Colorado Secretary of State, according to a complaint filed by Colorado Citizens for Ethics in Government (CCEG), a non-partisan, non-profit legal watchdog group.
According to CCEG, the Northern Colorado Victory Fund paid for nearly $30,000 worth of media attack ads in October and November 2006 against State Rep. John Kefalas (D-52), then a candidate for the seat against Republican incumbent Bob McCluskey. The race was a repeat of a 2004 match up in which McCluskey narrowly won re-election.
The fund is based in Fort Collins and dually registered as a Colorado LLC and a 527 political committee by GOP political operative Andrew Boucher, the former executive director of the New Hampshire Republican Committee which had its own share of problems when it engaged in a phone jamming scandal during the 2002 election to prevent state Democrats from making calls for its Get Out the Vote effort. Three members of the party’s leadership were charged with federal crimes and sentenced to prison last year.
CCEG also alleges that the Committee for the American Dream, a state political committee, failed to properly disclose $237,012 in contributions from members of the Colorado Association of Home Builders and more than $28,000 in attack ads, also targeting Kefalas, during the 2006 election cycle.
The Denver-based committee is led by Robert Nanfelt, a registered lobbyist for the home builders association.
Colorado political organizations are required to provide detailed information to the Secretary of State on contributors and electioneering communications. CCEG stated that “If campaign finance laws are properly enforced, NCVF and CAD would be fined $50 per day for each day the reports are past due and CAD would additionally be fined $50 per day for each day the requisite membership information is past due. To date no fines have been leveled against either group.”