Thursday, October 13, 2011
Comptroller Liu's numbers don't add up
From the NY Times:
Mr. Liu recently announced, with great fanfare, that he had taken in $1 million in the first six months of the year, much of it from donors who gave him $800 — to reflect the number 8, which is lucky in Chinese culture.
But there is much about Mr. Liu’s campaign money that does not add up.
Canvassing by The New York Times of nearly 100 homes and workplaces of donors listed on Mr. Liu’s campaign finance reports raises questions about the source and legitimacy of some donations, as well as whether some of the donors even exist. Some two dozen irregularities were uncovered, including instances in which people listed as having given to Mr. Liu say they never gave, say a boss or other Liu supporter gave for them, or could not be found altogether.
Two people who described attending banquets in which Mr. Liu appeared and posed for photos said that company executives who support him provided donations in the names of those in attendance.
In addition, Mr. Liu is not complying with some basic campaign finance laws: To protect against so-called straw donors, the city requires that donor cards submitted with campaign contributions be filled out only by the person making the donation. In numerous instances in Mr. Liu’s campaign, one person appears to have filled out cards for multiple donors.
His campaign is also engaging in bundling, in which well-connected individuals collect contributions for a candidate from friends, relatives and others, but Mr. Liu has not disclosed the bundlers’ names, as required.