In case you missed it, go look at the despicable ad John posted earlier. It's paid for by a new SuperPAC called Turn Right USA. Because it is a SuperPAC created for the purpose of making independent expenditures on behalf of candidates, no disclosures must be made with regard to donors.
However, there are some things we can learn about it from their FEC filing made earlier this week. TPM reported this yesterday:
The spot is produced by Ladd Ehlinger, Jr., best known for his wildly popular Dale "Don't Give A Rip" Peterson campaign video in the 2010 race for Alabama secretary of agriculture. Turn Right USA, the sponsor, is a brand new political action committee which only filed its paperwork with the Federal Election Commission on Monday. The paperwork indicates that Turn Right USA intends to operate as a so-called "super PAC," capable of raising funds in unlimited amount, but will not use those funds to directly support federal candidates or committees. Claude Todoroff serves as treasurer for the group, which is based in Gardena, Calif. G. Rick Marshall serves as the group's designated agent.
Here are some additional clues as to who would be paying for an ad like this:
G. Rick Marshall is active in local Republican politics in that area. In 2007, he received an endorsement from the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers' Association when he ran for the Torrance Unified School District board.
The treasurer of Huey's campaign is David Bauer, who also served as treasurer for NOM-California and the Yes on 8 campaign. (See affidavit here - PDF)
The bank listed for the PAC is Wells Fargo Bank, 6930 Skyway, Paradise, CA 95969. That is the same bank used for JD Hayworth's campaign in 2010, and also Vernon Parker. The treasurer of both committees was Kelly Lawler, a former staffer for the NRCC who has a client list that includes "Defend Sheriff Joe".
Vernon Parker is the chairman of that group, too. TPM reports further:
The director of "Defend Sheriff Joe" is Gary Bae, the owner of the Phoenix-based Compass Public Affairs Group, Inc.
Gary Bae is the owner of that company, and also director/member of Compass Properties, LLC. He's also a director and the secretary of Wake Up Arizona! Inc. Here is some information about Wake Up Arizona, Inc's sponsors.:
- Mac Magruder, owns McDonald’s franchises
- Ray Arvizu, owns Arvizu Advertising & Promotions, a Hispanic marketing firm
- Tom Barnett, owns Good Egg and Eggery restaurants and Burger King franchises
- Steve Chucri, president, Arizona Restaurant Association
- Jim Click, Tucson car dealer
- Jerry Colangelo, former owner, Phoenix Suns and Arizona Diamondbacks
- Brian Day O’Connor, owns a commercial real estate firm and a carwash; son of former U.S. Supreme Court justice
- Nicole Dreier, representing Burger King franchises
- Barry Goldwater Jr., son of former U.S. senator
- Danny Hendon, owns Danny’s Family Car Washes
- Steve Hilton, chief executive, Meritage Homes
- Gordon James, owns public relations firm
- James LeVecke, owns Carl’s Jr. franchises
- Jeff Moorad, general manager, Arizona Diamondbacks
- Mary Rose Wilcox, Maricopa County supervisor, owner El Portal restaurant
During the primary, Craig Huey paid Anahita Nemat for campaign consulting. Nemat served as the press assistant for Patients First, the Americans for Prosperity project to kill health care reform. He also paid The Davis Group (Joanne Davis) top dollar for fundraising advice. Joanne was the California finance manager for the Bush/Cheney campaign in 2000, among others.
It's no secret that Craig Huey is a long-standing conservative and Tea Party advocate with heavy ties to the religious right in California. And while Huey has denounced the ad weakly, it's equally obvious that some big money went into the production and ad buys for it.
I can't hand you a list of actual people contributing, but I think it's fairly obvious we're looking at the usual suspects in the arena of Tea Party funding. Wouldn't surprise me a bit to find out after the fact to discover that Sal Russo and Co had their dirty little hands all over it, given Russo's deep ties to the Yes on 8 campaign and other dirty enterprises. Assume there's likely some Koch money, Perot, and corporate sponsorship involved, too, along with the Reagan remnants left here in California and around the nation.