13 August 2007

Charter School Group Has History of Skirting Election Law

The Urbana Daily Citizen reports that Ohio's Secretary of State is looking into possible election law violations by All Children Matter, a pro-Republican PAC masquerading as a pro-charter school PAC masquerading as a pro-education group.

A Virginia-based national political action committee's transfer of $870,000 to an Ohio affiliate has caught the eye of Ohio's chief elections official.

Akron industrialist David Brennan, who also is president of the for-profit White Hat Management charter schools in Ohio and six other states, has given $200,000 since 2004 to All Children Matter, The Columbus Dispatch reported Sunday.

The Virginia group transferred $870,000 to an Ohio affiliate last year to help elect Republicans - the subject of a state election-law complaint.

Brunner's office says the Virginia PAC failed to register with elections officials in Ohio and did not file three required campaign finance reports in 2006. The Ohio group failed to make required changes to their finance reports and exceeded the limit that an Ohio PAC can accept...

All Children Matter was founded by Dick DeVos, the Michigan billionaire (Amway) and right-wing extremist.

A brief web search reveals that ACM has been in hot water over election law violations in both Missouri and Wisconsin.

In this case, the problem doesn't seem to be that the Virginia PAC transferred money to the Ohio PAC, but that it did so without registering as an Ohio PAC. As a result, it avoided PAC spending limits.

The hearing is scheduled for Aug. 23.


Wes said...

A friend of mine used to be involved with a charter school up here in Massachusetts. (He has since moved out of state.) We were and still are good friends, even though I was very clear in my dislike of charter schools.

About 4 months ago, I stopped by his office and he said "Now I see why you don't like charter schools - the ones in Ohio SUCK!"

Perhaps in some areas charters might work, but in Ohio they're just another way of destroying our public schools. We shan't be at all surprised - this is a stated goal of the theocratic wing of the GOP, as demonstrated by last year's Republican Gov./Lt. Gov. ticket.


WestEnder said...

I don't know how charters are run in other states, but they're not run well in Ohio. There's very little oversight and accountability.

WKRC-TV's Jeff Hirsch and Dan Hurley did a great series on the Harmony school last year. Questionable leadership, questionable fiscal management, questionable ethics. But it's still in business.