It's news reports about politicians like the one that appeared in the Jan. 11 Times, "Baugh Likely to Pay Fine, Lawyer Says" that cause voters to lose faith in our system of government.
In the recent 67th Assembly District recall of Doris Allen and special election to replace her, newcomer and political unknown Scott Baugh, with the help of Republican Party leaders inside and outside of Sacramento, demonstrated that he too knows how to play dirty politics in the bizarre world of Orange County politics.
Faced with a strong Democratic challenger, Baugh encouraged a second Democrat--a former co-worker at a Sacramento law firm--to run in order to split Democrat votes and benefit his own campaign. Following this--and with behind-the-scenes help from Republican leaders in Sacramento and Orange County--Baugh took a $1,000 contribution from the shill candidate's husband, failed to report the contribution, and when he finally disclosed it months later, denied he knew his former co-worker. He later admitted knowing her, and now through his attorney admitted "errors."
Voters passed campaign finance reform laws like Prop. 178 so we could know more about the candidates, who supports them, and make better-informed decisions on who to vote for.
At the very least, Baugh did some unethical things. At the worst, he lied. Voters deserve more than this. I'll be watching him during his term in office and remember him on election day. By manipulating voters and not reporting contributions, Baugh violated the law. Now he'll get a slap on the wrist after voters were slapped in the face.
Baugh was caught red-handed. He violated the law. He should resign.
* As one of those "die-hard" Republicans, it is difficult for me to express my disgust at the fraud and deceit that was necessary to ensure Scott Baugh was elected.
As far as I and many others are concerned, he is either a liar and a cheat or an ill-versed "puppet" whose actions are dictated by the big-money "king-makers" who have chosen to control the future of not only Orange County residents but loyal, law-abiding citizens of California as well!
If he is the "bright young attorney" for the railroad (as he was initially described) then why was he not bright enough to be able to comply with Fair Political Practices Commission regulations and why did he lie about the $1,000 cash contribution from Kendrick Campbell, the husband of Laurie Campbell, the "spoiler" who was punched into the recall race and with whom he had worked for years and later admitted he knew well?
As a taxpayer, I am sickened by the actions of representatives in whom I had placed my trust. Apparently, pressures from Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Huntington Beach) and Assembly Speaker Curt Pringle, plus the rest of the "king-makers," have suddenly made Baugh's blatant violations of FPPC regulations only an "error" in finance reporting. The FPPC regulations are written in simple fifth-grade language and if either Baugh is not bright enough to comprehend them or if the "machine's" pressures are enough to excuse his actions as "only ignorance of the law," he and the others have just lost my (and many others') vote in the forthcoming elections.
Orange County Dist. Atty. Michael R. Capizzi may not be any angel, but the smoke and mirrors that have been used to place blame on him for doing what he took an oath of office to do versus identifying the true villains in this entire scenario is nauseating! The actions of the district attorney were the result of Baugh's refusal to meet with him after repeated requests. If Baugh was innocent of any wrongdoing, why was this? Baugh got what he and his supporters wanted, i.e., a "sympathy" vote because the district attorney was forced to rely on a search warrant to obtain the needed data.
I may not reside in the 67th district but all I can say is, Orange County voters, wake up and quit supporting "bought and paid for" politicians as their vote affects us all!