Oregon GOP In Debt

The Oregon Republican Party is over a quarter of a million dollars in debt, including $35,000 it owes in unpaid payroll taxes to the IRS.

From the Associated Press:

The Oregon Republican Party is $264,000 in the red, a federal disclosure report shows - the latest blow to a party still licking its wounds from losses in the 2006 election and which has yet to field candidates for three statewide offices this year.

The party's debts include $35,000 it owes the Internal Revenue Service for about two years' worth of payroll taxes it failed to pay for its employees.

Things are so tight the state GOP is preparing to move its headquarters from a 3,000-square-foot rental office in a south Salem strip mall to smaller quarters somewhere else in the city.

"It's been a tough season for Republicans to raise money," GOP spokeswoman Brianne Hyder said Tuesday.

Contributions to the party have dropped drastically over the past several years:

Besides the $35,000 the party owes the IRS, the party's report with the Federal Election Commission lists unpaid debts to various businesses and vendors, such as the $67,180 that AT&T Wireless is demanding for providing cell phone service to the party.

Hyder said the party's tax problem occurred because an employee who was in charge of "all things financial" wrote checks to the IRS but never sent them. The unidentified employee has been fired, Hyder said.

The party's larger financial problems stem from "donor fatigue," with some traditional contributors scaling back their giving in recent years, Hyder said.

In 2004, a presidential election year, total donations to the party topped $4 million, she said. That amount fell to $1.2 million in 2006 while in all of 2007 the GOP received just over $500,000 from contributors.

"Our donors have scaled back across the board," she said.

Read the rest. Discuss.

Comments

  • verasoie (unverified)
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    Never fear, GOP stalwarts, the Conservative Majority Project is here to save the day!

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    If the Republicans had continued with a majority in the current legislature their party wouldn't be the only thing in debt.

  • Bert Lowry (unverified)
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    Ah, fiscal responsibility.

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    Bert:

    Exactly what I was thinking.

  • murphy (unverified)
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    Maybe they can snag some quick cash from a payday lender, or Lars can get a title loan on his Dodge.

    G.O.P = Got Only Pennies.

  • Samuel John Klein (unverified)
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    The party's larger financial problems stem from "donor fatigue," with some traditional contributors scaling back their giving in recent years, Hyder said

    And by "donor fatigue" we mean "people in over thier heads because the economy's in a near ruin".

    Hope that cleared things up a bit.

    How's that Republican economy working out then?

  • Samuel John Klein (unverified)
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    Oh, before I let this one get away:

    Things are so tight the state GOP is preparing to move its headquarters from a 3,000-square-foot rental office in a south Salem strip mall to smaller quarters somewhere else in the city

    IIRC, that's just what Skipper's Fish & Chips did just before they went out of business.

    Aaah, no such luck here, I suppose.

  • Frank Carper (unverified)
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    Kevin Mannix for Congress? We all know this was the ship he ran. And apparently ran into the ground. Nuff said?

  • LT (unverified)
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    If the Republicans are moving out of that nice office in Salem, any chance Democrats would take that office? Or is it too much to ask for the Democrats to come back to Salem?

    Sam, we drove by the Skippers on Lancaster tonight--are you saying that is no longer open?

  • Kathy (unverified)
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    It will be interesting to see if anyone can tie Kevin Mannix to the ORP mess. Everyone familar with Mannix know that not only did he "run the ORP into the ground", but used the position of chairman of the party for personal gain. Something tells me that Mannix has a lot of explaining to do.

    Looks like we have an excellent chance to hold on to Hooley's seat in the fall.

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    And nothing makes fundraising easier than trying to pay off creditors. Everyone loves to pick up the tab for financial mismanagement.

  • roxanne bruns (unverified)
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    And people think that Kevin Mannix is a great candidate for Congress, or anything for that matter? I can hear the tv spot now "Mannix apparently failed to take enough money from his sex therapist to pay payroll taxes for his own employees." What a great fiscal conservative.

  • LT (unverified)
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    Someone check the turnout by party by counties if that is possible. Seems to me I heard (from someone who is a rural Republican) of total 2006 turnout and then split by party and Democrats in at least one county had larger turnout than the total (for instance 60% turnout of all voters, 65% turnout of Democrats, something like that) and the Republican turnout was a lower percentage than the total turnout. Also that Kevin had let county parties wither and die because he didn't see that as part of the State Chair job.

  • Steve Packer (unverified)
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    The numbers imply we are missing some information about the source of the state GOP money. Those of us who raise money for the state and county parties know how difficult it is to convince donors to give for party infrastructure rather than for a candidate. Donations to a candidate are so much more satisfying for donors of all levels but particularly for those who are buying access.

    The DPO raises a respectable amount but this is just enough to pay for salaries and technology which leaves nothing to fund a candidate. The counties raise even less which explains why it is so hard to get county offices open.

    With the reported income of $4, 1.2 and .5 million, I suspect they are getting money to run the statewide races from the national party. The coordinated campaign in 2004 would have spent something like $4M. The 2007 number is a very respectable for a state party and does not signal their failure.

    However, the $1/4M deficit is a huge statement about their values.

  • DAN GRADY (unverified)
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    SAVE DEMOCRACY, VOTE FOR A DEMOCRAT!!

    "Our donors have scaled back across the board," she said.//Brianne Hyder

    Schadenfreude; it can be so ugly, and yet can you resist?

    I would point out that the Neo-Con would have "taken the baby to the bath to drown it" when it's opponnent (liberals/progressives) were weak. I would like the Grand Ole Party metaphore of a retirement home for a Permanent convalescence.

    Happy Thoughts;

    Dan Grady

  • pdxatheist (unverified)
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    this is very satisfying to read, although a more meaningful article would have included a comparison with democratic party coffers. anyone know where to find this information?

  • Murphey (unverified)
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    Maybe they can snag some quick cash from a payday lender, or Lars can get a title loan on his Dodge.

    G.O.P = Got Only Pennies.

    Unfortunately lars can’t do that he doesn’t own that dodge kxl is leasing it for him. A while back I say a post at another site indicating that, so I called DMV and according to their records kxl holds the title.

  • Tom Civiletti (unverified)
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    Looks like Republicans are as responsible with their own finances as they are with the nation's - and just as honest. Blaming a single employee for the failure to cover payroll taxes over an extended period is as goofy as continuing to push trickle-down economics.

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    I know it's wrong to enjoy this as much as I am. But I am.

  • Vicky P. (unverified)
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    Steve Packer wins the cookie! Dead on. I was initially excited by this story, but then discovered that there was a "liars can figure" problem. While party contributions crashed, the state campaign finance database indicates candidate contributions to the GOP is slightly ahead of historical averages. So don't celebrate yet. More work lies ahead!

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    You're doin' a heckuva job, "All Things Financial Guy"!

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    Steve and Vicky are spot-on. There is clearly some mismanagement going on, but the R's are going to have a boatload of cash to spend on candidate races in 2008 -- easily more than the Democrats.

    Look for them to put most of it into the Oregon House.

  • Samuel John Klein (unverified)
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    LT: Sam, we drove by the Skippers on Lancaster tonight--are you saying that is no longer open?

    No, strangely, that one still seems to be open. Late last year, though, Skippers went into liquidation and only a few stores are left open. That one on Lancaster seems to be one of the lucky ones, but it may go away too when the chain finally gets all wound up.

    Wikipedia's article has this to day:

    On December 12, 2006 Skipper's Inc. filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in U.S. Court in Seattle in an organizational restructuring. The restructuring failed, and Skipper's was liquidated on June 29, 2007. Of the 58 stores remaining after Skipper's initially filed for bankruptcy, 28 will be sold to various individuals and corporate interests. The majority of the locations not sold closed permanently on June 30, 2007, although 16 stores - all in Washington - remain open while buyers are sought. When the sales of individual units and closures are finalized, Skipper's Inc. will cease to exist as a corporation.

    The inspriation for my wisecrack was that before it went belly up, Skipper's moved from its former digs in Edmonds to a cheaper office complex somewher in SeaTac, kind of like what that article said the GOPpies did in Salem.

    <h2>Regretfully, I think we won't be rid of Republicans any time soon, no matter how moribund that party gets. They're kind of like cicadas that way.</h2>
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