OC GOP Should Rescind Kring Endorsement
Posted by OC Insider on October 7, 2012
Word on the street, as they say, is that a request has been made for the Republican Party of Orange County to rescind its endorsement of Anaheim council candidate Lucille Kring, in light of the fact that she solicited and received a contribution from the Anaheim Police Officers PAC in June of this year (first reported on this blog).
News of the OC Political post reached the former councilmember, whose first instinct was to call left-wing blogger Vern Nelson and ask reaction was to call left-wing blogger Vern Nelson, and ask him to convey her response. Here’s what Vern commented on the earlier post:
Lucille called me from out canvassing – I guess I’m the bloggiest guy I know! – someone told her about this story, and she asked me to write:
She had been planning to give back that money since she took that pledge; her husband is her treasurer and was supposed to do that, but he’s been traveling a lot lately partly because his mother recently died; but she will return it POSTHASTE!
Kring took the police union contribution on June 20, as she reported on page four of her January 1-June 30 campaign disclosure. She calls a left-wing blogger to explain she had meant to return it, but still had not done so three-and-a-half months later.
This is the first instance of Kring acknowledging getting the police union donation, and only because this blog has made it public. As you can see, on page 1, the very first thing candidates are asked to sign their name to — before even answering whether or not they are Republicans — is a the “Union-Free” pledge. It is spelled out in capital letters:
“I WILL NOT ACCEPT CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTIONS FROM GOVERNMENT UNIONS.”
She admits to blogger Vern Nelson that she was and is aware that this contribution violates the Baugh Manifesto, from which this pledge comes.
It is common knowledge in Anaheim political circles that Lucille Kring actively approached Anaheim police union officers and consultants seeking the union’s support. She did this even as she was cultivating OC GOP Central Committee members for their endorsement.
Kring is not a first-time candidate. She is aware of the Baugh Manifesto and the pledge candidates seeking the party endorsement have to take. She knows taking government union money is incompatible with seeking the OC GOP endorsement, but she still did both.
She withheld from the OC GOP Central Committee the fact that she had sought and received financial support from the Anaheim police union. That $500 contribution was still in her campaign account, three and a half months after accepting it a and almost a month after getting the OC GOP endorsement. Kring is saying she’ll return now that it has been made public, but what if it hadn’t been exposed? After all, Kring didn’t tell the Central Committee about it when she had the chance.
It’s unlikely the OC GOP would have endorsed Kring if it had known about the police union contribution. That contribution sends a message of its own: that Kring was cultivating the police union, and would have gone on cultivating it if the OC GOP endorsement had gone the other way.
The OC GOP can let this go and send the message that the party can be had, that the Central Committee members can be snookered, that you can get both the OC GOP endorsement and government union campaign contributions if you can keep the former in the dark long enough about the latter.
Or it can fix this mistake. Letting this slide would be unfair to candidates who have been refused the endorsement for the same offense. The party should apply the “Union-Free” pledge the same way to every candidate. It should start by rescinding its endorsement of Lucille Kring.