When There Is Some There There, I Will Write About It Here

Congressman Frank Guinta has some FEC reporting problems from 2010 which are making headlines now. The last time I remember such a situation and wrote about it was the Burt Cohen (D) 2004 Senate Campaign where Burt Cohen brought in an out of state campaign “expert” with a questionable past, sound familiar, who was the real campaign treasurer, not the named campaign treasurer.

The out of state expert, Jessie Burchfield, then filed false reports, stole money and – ready for this, generated false press releases stating Burt Cohen’s campaign was flush with cash. The false press releases were intended to scare other candidates away.

Here is the story, in brief, from the FEC report:

2004 - New Hampshire Senate campaign and campaign manager penalized for receipt of impermissible funds, diverting campaign funds to personal use and reporting violations.

In MUR 5646, the FEC entered into conciliation agreements with Jesse Burchfield, Cohen for New Hampshire, and John Buchalski in his official capacity as the committee treasurer, and Burton Cohen. The agreements state that while Mr. Burchfield was de-facto manager of Mr. Cohen's campaign for the U.S. Senate, Burchfield knowingly and willfully falsified information on the campaigns reports to the FEC and converted campaign funds to his own personal use.

In November 2005, Mr. Burchfield pled guilty in U.S. District Court to one count of filing false statements and was later sentenced to one year of probation and six months of home confinement. In the FEC matter, Burchfield agreed to pay a civil penalty of $1,500 in light of his poor financial condition and is prohibited from working or volunteering in any federal political committee in a capacity that involves fundraising or handling finances for a period of ten years.

The FEC also found that Burton Cohen worked with Jesse Burchfield to use funds raised for a state campaign to initiate the Senate campaign in violation of FECA and failed to disclose that activity.

In a separate agreement, Mr. Cohen agreed to pay a civil penalty of $9,000. Cohen for New Hampshire also violated the FECA by accepting undisclosed impermissible funds from the state campaign account and using them in the Senate campaign.

The Committee agreed to pay a civil penalty of $10,000 for failing to keep accurate records and file accurate reports of receipts and disbursements, among other violations.

Under the law, the FEC must attempt to resolve its enforcement cases, or Matters Under Review (MURs), through a confidential investigative process that may lead to a negotiated conciliation agreement between the Commission and the individual or group the Commission determines has violated the law. 

Additional information regarding MURs can be found on the FEC web site at http://www.fec.gov/em/mur.shtml.

This release contains only summary information.  For additional details, please consult publicly available documents for each case in the Enforcement Query System (EQS) on the FEC web site at http://eqs.fec.gov/eqs/searcheqs.

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is an independent regulatory agency that administers and enforces federal campaign finance laws. The FEC has jurisdiction over the financing of campaigns for the U.S. House, the U.S. Senate, the Presidency and the Vice Presidency. Established in 1975, the FEC is composed of six Commissioners who are nominated by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

The web site for information as to how the FEC comes to terms with willful or accidental misreporting of campaign funds is located here:

http://www.fec.gov/law/cfr/ej_compilation/2007/notice_2007-8.pdf

If you would like to visit 2005 and see what a wilfull FEC violation looks like – lucky you. I have more for you.

http://www.cnht.org/news/2005/07/11/where-is-jesse-burchfield/

Jessie Burchfield was the first out-of-state low life political scum The Coalition of NH Taxpayers started tracking. It is hard to find anything on this former up and comer campaign expert now.

So when people ask my why am I not writing about Congressman Frank Guinta and his FEC violations I have to say they are far less interesting than the ones I am used to. I leave that job to the professional NH media and RINOs.