With 7/15’s campaign finance filing, “voters and political observers got their first real glimpse into the numbers behind one important aspect” of this year’s political camps. “The most eagerly awaited fundraising numbers were for the major party candidates” to replace Gov. Jim Douglas (R).
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Among the Dems in the primary, ‘02 LG nominee/state Senate Pres. Pro Tem Peter Shumlin (D) “raised the most money over the last year,” tallying more than $418K, although about $150K of that was a loan to the camp of the candidate’s own money. Sec/State Deb Markowitz (D) has raised the most money overall among Dems, $524K. LG Brian Dubie (R) has raised more (nearly $1M) spent more (nearly a half-million dollars) and has more cash than any of his rivals.
And for ‘02 nominee/state Sen./ex-LG Doug Racine (D), “it remains to be seen if the endorsements he has gathered from labor unions and the Vermont League of Conservation Voters will make up the difference” (Porter, Barre-Montpelier Times Argus, 7/16).
A Different Government Filing
“When it comes to personal wealth,” Shumlin appears to have the most among this year’s candidates. Last year, he made nearly $1M, and he has already lent $150K to his bid for gov.
Four years after ‘06 SEN nominee/IDX Systems Corp. Chair Richard Tarrant (R) spent more than $6M of his own money in a losing bid to represent VT in the Senate, “Shumlin is poised to tap his fortune.” Neither Dubie nor any of the Dems are close to Shumlin in income, according to ‘09 federal tax returns.
Markowitz, who makes about $76K, was a “distant second behind Shumlin in funding from self or family.” Her campaign finance report showed funding from self and family of about $25K of the $524K she had raised so far. Markowitz said in an interview she didn’t begrudge Shumlin’s decision to put his own money into his campaign. Markowitz: “He’s got the money to spend so he’s spending it.”
Racine reported that about $15K of the $210K he had raised so far had come from himself or his family. Racine reported about $136K in income in 2009.
State Sen. Susan Bartlett (D) reported an adjusted gross income last year of about $96K. Her filing showed about $10.5K of the roughly $71K her campaign had raised to date had come from herself or her family (Bennington Banner, 7/18).
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As the Russia investigation heats up, "the role of Marc E. Kasowitz, the president’s longtime New York lawyer, will be significantly reduced. Mr. Trump liked Mr. Kasowitz’s blunt, aggressive style, but he was not a natural fit in the delicate, politically charged criminal investigation. The veteran Washington defense lawyer John Dowd will take the lead in representing Mr. Trump for the Russia inquiry."
President Trump's attorneys are "actively compiling a list of Mueller’s alleged potential conflicts of interest, which they say could serve as a way to stymie his work." They plan to argued that Mueller is going outside the scope of his investigation, in inquiring into Trump's finances. They're also playing small ball, highlighting "donations to Democrats by some of" Mueller's team, and "an allegation that Mueller and Trump National Golf Club in Northern Virginia had a dispute over membership fees when Mueller resigned as a member in 2011." Trump is said to be incensed that Mueller may see his tax returns, and has been asking about his power to pardon his family members.
In addition to ties between Russia and the Trump campaign, Robert Mueller's team is also "examining a broad range of transactions involving Trump’s businesses as well as those of his associates, according to a person familiar with the probe. FBI investigators and others are looking at Russian purchases of apartments in Trump buildings, Trump’s involvement in a controversial SoHo development in New York with Russian associates, the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow, and Trump’s sale of a Florida mansion to a Russian oligarch in 2008, the person said. The investigation also has absorbed a money-laundering probe begun by federal prosecutors in New York into Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort."
Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team is "is examining a broad range of transactions involving Trump’s businesses as well as those of his associates", including "Russian purchases of apartments in Trump buildings, Trump’s involvement in a controversial SoHo development with Russian associates, the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow and Trump’s sale of a Florida mansion to a Russian oligarch in 2008."
"A Senate bill to gut Obamacare would increase the number of uninsured people by 32 million and double premiums on Obamacare's exchanges by 2026, according to an analysis from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. The analysis is of a bill that passed Congress in 2015 that would repeal Obamacare's taxes and some of the mandates. Republicans intend to leave Obamacare in place for two years while a replacement is crafted and implemented."