Todd Zink returns big contributions in state Senate race

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With the election looming next week, most candidates are scrambling for all the money they can get to keep the mail and television ads flowing.

So it baffled some observers that Republican state Senate candidate Todd Zink’s campaign in the 27th District has returned $140,000 in recent days to two county GOP committees.

‘Either Todd Zink is supremely confident, or else he is throwing in the towel,’ offered Parke Skelton, a campaign strategist for Democratic Sen. Fran Pavley (D-Agoura Hills), the other contestant in the Nov. 6 election.

The answer is much simpler: Zink had voluntarily agreed to abide by a state spending limit, which is $1,169,000, and he has reached the limit, according to John Peshong, chairman of the Republican Party of San Luis Obispo. Zink returned $100,000 in contributions from Peshong’s committee and $40,000 he had received from the GOP committee in Sacramento County.


For accepting the limit, Zink was allowed to place a candidate’s statement in the official voter pamphlet. Pavley did not observe the voluntary spending limit, Skelton said..

Zink, a Los Angeles County prosecutor and former Marine, noted that he just purchased $60,000 more time for radio ads for the last week of the campaign. ‘Understand that Marines never give up,’ he said.

Republicans are still hopeful Zink can unseat Pavley in a district that straddles the San Fernando Valley and Ventura County. ‘He has an exceptionally strong campaign,’ Peshong said of Zink. ‘He’s running a great race.’


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-- Patrick McGreevy in Sacramento