Gary Johnson Quiet on Campaign Cash Questions

Gary Johnson, 2012’s Libertarian Party presidential candidate and former New Mexico Governor, recently hosted a post-election AMA

(Ask Me Anything) on Reddit and things didn’t go, perhaps, quite as planned. His top question (receiving 180 “up votes” … 117 more than the second most popular question) was ignored by the former candidate:

“I’ve read your campaign manager used $2.3 million of the $2.5 million you raised to pay his own company. If I donated money to your campaign, where do I write for a refund?”

Parapolitical reported on the situation:

“Johnson’s campaign ended 2012  $1,134,602 in debt of which $1,051,637 is owed to the consulting company owned by the campaign manager presumably responsible for accruing that debt … the debt is on top of millions already paid to the firm. Of roughly $2.5 million raised and spent by Johnson prior to the election, more than $2.3 million of his supporters donations and federal matching funds were disbursed to campaign manager Nielson’s company.”

There’s also the matter of a lawsuit filed by a former Ron Paul fundraiser who went to work for the campaign and since claims he was stiffed on his invoices while the campaign manager’s company was paid “first and in full.” Still, Johnson appears unfazed by the clamor for information about the opaque millions. On Tuesday, he will host a Google Hangout to solicit money for his newest venture, “Our America” – which is also being run and managed by his former campaign manager’s company.

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  • echar

    I think I bought drugs from that guy back in the day.

  • http://twitter.com/DanielReasor Daniel Reasor

    Candidates from every party do this. Precise numbers on how much unspent campaign money John Kerry walked away with after ceding the 2004 race to his fraternity brother are impossible to come by, due to the number of accounts across which the money was scattered, but just one of his campaign accounts was sitting on $14 or $15 million as of December 2004. Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2004/12/04/politics/04donate.html

    • eric82

      Yeah, so that’s not what this is about.

      There’s been an ongoing discussion among Libertarians over at independentpoliticalreport.com about some of the serious question marks that surround Johnson’s campaign.

      Give $90 out of every $100 to your longtime business crony and say “he’s campaigning on my behalf?” If everything was on the up-and-up, Gary can just release original vendor receipts to prove that his donors money was being spent and not getting dumped into personal bank under the line item “consulting fees.” So far he’s refused to even acknowledge the question. It reeks.

      • http://twitter.com/DanielReasor Daniel Reasor

        I agree that it reeks; I was stating that this particular way of swindling campaign donors is known and widely practiced, using Kerry as an example. He didn’t just pocket his money outright, he had to launder it by donating it to foundations first.

        I’m curious to know what the people who downvoted me think I said.

      • http://twitter.com/DanielReasor Daniel Reasor

        I agree that it reeks; I was stating that this particular way of swindling campaign donors is known and widely practiced, using Kerry as an example. He didn’t just pocket his money outright, he had to launder it by donating it to foundations first.

        I’m curious to know what the people who downvoted me think I said.

        • eric82

          LOL, I was one of those who downvoted you – I just changed it to an upvote.

          I thought you were saying “meh – everyone does it, what’s the big deal?” (Sorry!)

          Anyway, as I see it, Gary Johnson – it appears – has managed to leverage the lack of media scrutiny third party candidates (sadly) receive by engaging in high-dollar campaign shenanigans he knows no one will ever call him on because the MSM aren’t watching.

          At IPR they had an interesting discussion about Gary’s possible financial motivations, including some curious questions about the value of his house: http://www.independentpoliticalreport.com/2013/02/gary-johnson-hosts-google-hangout-on-february-26th/#comments

  • BuzzCoastin

    money irregularities in a politician’s bank account????!!!!
    wow
    that’s gotta be a first

  • https://twitter.com/posthumanistic/ Posthuman Apparel

    Mr Johnson, thanks for making asshats out of all of us who raised awareness for your campaign and argued to our friends, family, peers etc that voting 3rd party wasnt a wasted vote.

  • no_one

    I’m not saying there’s no possible fraud here, but it’s possible that the only fraud is a problem of the system, and no actual taking advantage.

    1) Anyone watched The Wire? It’s not just people getting swindled who pay consultants a pile of money. Sometimes that’s just how you grease the wheels.

    2) While I don’t know that he is telling the truth, a recent independent named David Seaman attempted to run against a strong incumbent, and found out that not only is it insanely expensive ($1 million wasn’t enough), but that it’s so convoluted that you have to pay a ton of money for a lawyer who knows all the bureaucracy so that you pay all those expensive fees and get all the necessary licenses. (Yes, multiple licenses.)

  • http://profiles.google.com/pcwag33 Pete Wagner

    Gary Johnson creep is false opposition just like Romney, Santorum, Palin, etc. Sorry, but Ron Paul and his son too. Folks need to have or get a good nose for sniffing out fishiness.

  • http://profiles.google.com/pcwag33 Pete Wagner

    Gary Johnson creep is false opposition just like Romney, Santorum, Palin, etc. Sorry, but Ron Paul and his son too. Folks need to have or get a good nose for sniffing out fishiness.

  • Puzzled

    Nonsense. This is part of the strategy – make running on a third party ticket expensive and confusing, then publicly attack candidates for the need to pay consultants to make it happen. For those who are concerned about this, here are some of the services NSON provided:

    Hiring petitioners in states that needed help

    Distributing campaign materials

    Providing all campaign staff

    Providing all candidates transportation for nationwide tour

    This was a simple matter of contracting through one paypoint.

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