I realize the Club for Growth has no love for Bennett, the problem is, they aren’t in Utah, don’t know likely alternative, AG Mark Shurtleff the way they know Pat Toomey – and once one digs into the details surrounding Shurtleff and his campaign, a genuinely troubling image for conservatives begins to emerge.
First, it appears that Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff may well be violating FEC regulations, while failing to attract the kind of broad support he would need in the Fall if he manages to knock off Bennett in a potential run-off. And it’s far from the first instance of Shurtleff playing fast and loose with money, while squandering taxpayer dollars pandering to illegal immigrants when he was supposed to be doing his job.
At issue is where Shurtleff’s money is coming from. Gee, lawyers and payday lenders who often serve the illegal immigrant community … who woulda thunk? Those aren’t folks who normally support conservative politicians, but then, Shurtleff has a history of being soft on illegal immigration, what with his pandering to illegal immigrants on the taxpayer’s dime and his ‘Aguila Azteca’ award, see second and third graphs below.
Back in 2006, Attorney General Mark Shurtleff addressed a rally of thousands of illegal immigrants. “Many of my fellow Republicans will criticize me for being here,” he said. “They’ll tell me instead of speaking to you, that as the chief law enforcement [officer] of Utah I should be arresting you. [That’s] not going to happen.”
For years, Shurtleff has supported amnesty, opposed English-only legislation and has been known to break Utah’s Official English law by speaking in an official capacity in Spanish. [Shurtleff and Latinos Share a ‘Pretend’ Meeting, March 10, By Frank Curreri, The Salt Lake Tribune]
Vicente Fox is so pleased with Shurtleffthat he is planning to award the Utah Attorney General with the ‘Aguila Azteca’, Mexico’s highest award for foreigners. [Order of the Aztec Eagle, a very different bird from the American one.] [Pedira Fox Condecorar a Procurador de Utah Por su Apoyo a Migrantes, Hector Alvarez Fernandez Notimex, May 24th, 2006]
Here’s the heart of his latest financial woes. Unfortunately, it doesn’t end there.
Bennett told reporters that Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff “appears” to be using state funds for a federal race.“It appears that there has been comingling, and if there has been it’s illegal,” Bennett said. “The fundamental question is, he’s announced that he’s not running for re-election as attorney general, but he’s still raising money for his race for attorney general. What is he going to do with that money?”
Shurtleff received much of his money through huge donations (much larger than allowed by federal law in Senate races) from corporations, which by law cannot give directly to federal candidates. The cash usually came from local groups interested in his local work as attorney general, ranging from local law firms to payday lenders.
Shurtleff already remains under suspicion of taking cash for favors given his prominent Koeber Pass issues. So, where is this so called conservative going to come down on any immigration vote? Has he aleady been bought off? One might argue the case, as opposed to Shurtleffwho, as with Koeber, doesn’t seem to want to argue any case when there’s a potential deep pocket for him involved.
Of course, not every thing has such serious implications where Shurtleffis involved. If nothing else, having him in Washington should provide some comic relief. Besides his well known bumbling, also see Utah to fight on line sex sales, and Shurtleff’s penchant for call girls on his Twitter feed.
Still large, potentially illegal corporate campaign donations, bought off prosecutions and call girls mixed in with the perpetual screw up Shurtleff might not be the next change we need in Washington right now.
You can say what you want about Bennett, what he hasn’t done is embarrass us, or ever delivered a loss in the election booth. Yes, I’m a conservative, there’s no doubt of that. But given the incredible need we have to retain and take every seat in 2010 to stop this atrocity in the White House just now, I’ll take a guy I can count on, as opposed to one who very well might blow up in my face and lose a race he never should because he can’t keep his hands out of the cookie jar as a state DA.
He’d have the opportunity to rake it in if he makes it to the Senate and I’ve never known Bennett’s vote to be up for sale. As a Reagan conservative, I still believe there’s a lot to be said for principle. And we have too damned little of it today in politics as is.
Make up your own mind as you will, but I have serious concerns this guy Shurtleff is just more bad news after bad news. And that’s not an opinion, it’s straight from the headlines of the Salt Lake City Tribune.