Who Is Election Energy, And Why It Matters

On November 28, 2012, in Candidates, Justice, by tommy

Last week, we discussed Verified Twitter Accounts – specifically, that Minnesota Supreme Court Justice G. Barry Anderson had one. On Monday, we looked at Chief Justice Lorie Gildea’s expenses on her Campaign Finance Reports (“CFB”) for her campaign website – well, specifically, the lack thereof.

Today, we’re going to look at website expenses for the campaign of Supreme Court Justice G. Barry Anderson – and several other prominent Republicans. We’ll start with one such prominent Republican, the soon-to-be former GOP Senate Caucus Leader Dave Senjem – a screenshot from Senjem’s CFB report is above. On Sen Senjem’s CFB report, you’ll note the expenses of $250 and $12 on 31 July and 17 September 2012 for website related fees to “Election Energy” to a street address in Apple Valley. That street address matches the address listed which was found during a Domain Search for www.ElectionEnergy.com; link to screenshot here.

Justice G. Barry Anderson also used Election Energy as a vendor; on his latest CFB report it’s his largest vendor – accounting for almost 30% of his campaign’s expenditures (almost $19k). Except, on Anderson’s CFB report, there’s a different address for Election Energy; it’s listed as a P. O. Box.

Hmmm…. Time to check property tax records for the address reported by Senjem’s campaign! And what do we find? It seems the address used by Senjem, and NOT used by Anderson, is owned by: “Grant B. and Louise H. Anderson”.

Sources have confirmed the address used by Senjem, but NOT by Anderson, is indeed Justice G. Barry Anderson’s home.

Of course, it’s possible that “Election Energy” – using a business address of State Supreme Court Justice Grant B. Anderson, who goes by “G. Barry Anderson” – isn’t owned by Justice Anderson; it’s possible it’s owned by his son, Grant Anderson, who is acting as Justice Anderson’s digital director.

Better check with the Secretary of State’s Office, and find out who is the registered owner(s) of “Election Energy”!

Hmmmm….. An on-line search, via the Secretary of State’s office reveals: “No results match the criteria entered.”. Hmmm, maybe I’m doing something wrong? No, said the nice person at the Secretary of State’s Business Services Section – they couldn’t find any record of registration either.

Does a website company that’s physically located in Minnesota, has customers in Minnesota, and is soliciting for more business need to be registered? Well, according to the nice person at the Secretary of State’s office, who did NOT know the nature of the people involved – a sitting State Supreme Court justice, for one – said while not an attorney, it appears that under statutes 303 and 331 – the short answer is yes.

To recap: what we appear to have is an unlicensed business being run out of the home of a Supreme Court Justice that has said Justice as a customer. Additional customers include current GOP Senator Senjem, former GOP State Rep Keith Downey, soon-to-be GOP House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt, and fellow Supreme Court Justice David Stras, whose campaign sent $5,000 to Election Energy’s P.O. Box.

Here’s what I wrote in the post about Gildea:

If there is anyone who’s campaign finance reports should be squeaky clean and transparent, it’s a judge running for re-election – especially the judge running to retain the seat for Chief Justice of the State Supreme Court.

Consider that said about Justice G. Barry too. There’s some ‘splainin’ to do….

(cross posted at MnProgressiveProject.com; comments welcome there)

Last week, we discussed Verified Twitter Accounts – specifically, that Minnesota Supreme Court Justice G. Barry Anderson had one, and we were looking at his re-election Campaign Finance Reports. And we are; stay tuned for what’s turned up! While doing so, we also took a look at two of the other candidates for re-election to the Supreme Court – Justice David Stras, who also had a Twitter Verified Account, and Chief Justice Lorie Gildea, who didn’t. Something stuck out while going through Chief Justice Gildea’s reports – by omission.

Everybody these days has a campaign web site; candidates for State Supreme Court being no different. And as anybody that’s ever set one up knows, they cost dough. Pick a domain name, register it, build the website, host it… Well, picking the name is free. Registration and building a website and hosting it? Not so much. The image, above, is from 2007, back when Pawlenty Appointee Justice Gildea first ran for re-election; the domain for the website is www.JusticeLorieGildea.com.

A review of Justice Gildea’s Campaign Finance Reports for 2007 does not show an expenditure nor an in-kind donation for any of that. Nor does her 2008 Report. Clearly it’s there; registered 09 Feb 07.

Fast forward to February 2012, and the image to the right. It’s the “Who Is” Domain Registration (www.ChiefJusticeLorieGildea.com) information for the Pawlenty appointed Gildea, who is now running for re-election for Chief State Supreme Court Justice.

On Chief Justice’s campaign website, the disclaimer on the bottom reads “Prepared and paid for by Minnesotans for Chief Justice Gildea, P.O. Box…”

Yet again, a review of Chief Justice Gildea’s Campaign Finance Reports for 2012 does not show an expenditure nor an in-kind donation for the new campaign website domain. Nor for building a new website, nor for hosting a website.

If there is anyone who’s campaign finance reports should be squeaky clean and transparent, it’s a judge running for re-election – especially the judge running to retain the seat for Chief Justice of the State Supreme Court.

An email and phone call for an explanation to the Campaign Treasurer for both campaigns have not been returned.

(cross posted at MnProgressiveProject.com; comments welcome there)

About Those Twitter “Verified Accounts”

On November 23, 2012, in Candidates, Justice, by tommy

Regular Readers will probably remember yours truly, the ol’ TwoPutter, had media credentials for the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. And we had a LOT of fun covering Charlotte 2012, beginning with finding fake lemons in the tree outside of failed Veep Candidate Paul Ryan’s WI Office. While in the media area of Charlotte 2012, I happened across the Twitter Office of, well, Twitter – picture to the right.

So I stopped to talk to the nice people at Twitter, and asked ‘em how yours truly, the ol’ TwoPutter, could get one o’ those elusive, but coveted, blue checkmarks for my Twitter account – signifying a Twitter “Verified Account”. There’s a screenshot, below, on what these check marks look like.

Here’s what Twitter says about ‘em:

What kinds of accounts get verified?

Twitter proactively verifies accounts on an ongoing basis to make it easier for users to find who they’re looking for. We concentrate on highly sought users in music, acting, fashion, government, politics, religion, journalism, media, advertising, business, and other key interest areas. We verify business partners from time to time and individuals at high risk of impersonation.

We do not accept requests for verification from the general public. If you fall under one of the above categories and your Twitter account meets our qualifications for verification, we may reach out to you in the future.(emphasis added)

I figured it’d be a slam dunker; there I was with the media credentials, and I already had worked with Twitter to get a few nasty fake twitter accounts (stuff)-canned that had been causing problems for yours truly, the ol’ TwoPutter.

So when I asked the nice person at Twitter, in the media area, at Charlotte 2012 about it, the nice person handed me off to another nice person working for Twitter – in sales.

Yes, “sales.” And here’s what I was told:

For most folks, it takes dough to get one of those elusive, but coveted, blue check marks that indicate a “verified account;” a blue check mark like you see to the right on a screen shot of Minnesota Supreme Court G. Barry Anderson’s Twitter account.

How much dough, I asked. $15,000.00 was the answer; but not necessarily all at once – it could be spread out over a couple of months. I explained I had read the Twitter “Verified Account” policy; it seemed I qualified for a freebee for two reasons (as outlined above). Reply? Nope. Cash. Well, it was also explained that if someone who was already spending dough on Twitter ads and promoted tweets, etc already had one, Twitter often gave one o’ those elusive but coveted check marks to a friend/associate/whatever of one of said spenders as a comp.

I checked around with a few media types in the media areas while in Charlotte, and heard in essence: yep, that’s how the “Verified Account” game was played. Did a little digging on google too. No biggie; if that’s the way the game was played and since I didn’t have – let alone plan on spending – $15 biggies, no blue check mark for yours truly, the ol’ TwoPutter.

Fast forward to October 8th, 2012, and a story by Strib Reporter Rachel Stassen-Berger: “Promoted Justice On Twitter”. Rachel writes about the blue “verified account” check mark that’s shown on the screen shot you see just a little bit above on the Twitter Account of G. Barry Anderson, running for re-election for his seat on the bench on Minnesota’s Supreme Court.

Here’s Rachel’s lede:

Supreme Court Justice G. Barry Anderson may be making history, 140-characters at a time.

The justice, first appointed to the high court by Gov. Tim Pawlenty in 2004, is using promoted tweets to advance his campaign to stay on the court. He is among the first prominent Minnesota politicians to use promotion, Twitter’s version of online advertising, in his campaign. (emphasis added)

Rachel also noted that Justice Anderson’s Digital Director is the Justice’s son, Grant Anderson. Noted now is that Justice Anderson’s campaign web page is credited, on the web page, to Election Energy.

Didn’t think much of Rachel’s story, at the time. And pretty much forgot about it, until I saw and retweeted the tweet to the right. OK, a lot has been said by a lot of people about Michael Brodkorb – including by me – for, ahem, “a variety of reasons.”

One thing a lot of people that have said a lot about Michael Brodkorb also say is that when it comes down to political skills and instincts, it pays to pay attention to Michael Brodkorb. So if Michael thought “the campaign spending & contribution report” of Supreme Court Justice G. Barry Anderson was “interesting” – well, yours truly, the ol’ TwoPutter, pays attention.

And said report is indeed interesting – and we’ll get to what yours truly, the ol’ TwoPutter has found.

So – stay tuned!!!

(cross posted at MnProgressiveProject; comments welcome there)

As noted by fellow MPP Blogger The Big E (Justice Page Got It Right), all four Pawlenty Appointees ruled as the majority today on lawsuits concerning Constitutional Amendments on November’s ballot. For this discussion, I’m going to focus on the decision regarding the ballot names for the amendments, and then discuss the Voter Suppression Amendment. Joining Justice Page in dissent on ballot names was Justice Paul Anderson (not to be confused with Pawlenty’s republican pick, G. Gordon “Barry” Anderson). Both of their dissents were blistering; I prefer Justice Paul Anderson’s – read them both here.

Be that as it may, the Pawlenty Appointees held court. So, now what? There’s only three things that can be done to limit the damage the GOP’s Voter Suppression Amendment will do, and I’ll count them down: 3) Take back the State House and the State Senate. The rules on how the Amendment are still to be written; the GOP basically said, to all of the objections: “Trust us.” Yeah, “right.” Trust the GOP, which as a party is so financially incompetent they can’t pay their rent??!? And that’s just for starters. Always remember this: You Couldn’t Trust The GOP Then, You Still Can’t Now, And Tomorrow Won’t Be Any Different 2) Get rid of one of the four Pawlenty Appointees by voting for Dean Barkley, who is running against G. Gordon “Barry” Anderson. 1) Beat the damned Amendment in November.

For several reasons why this Voter Suppression Amendment is so noxious, here’s a recent interview of State Representative Steve Simon:

(cross posted at MnProgressveProject.com; comments welcome there)

… numbers don’t lie, but GOPers use numbers.

Well, it could also be: …those that forget the lessons of history tend to vote GOP.

Share photos on twitter with TwitpicActually, it’s “both” and it has to do with Pawlenty in 2009 doing something with the budget process that the State Supreme Court, in 2010, said he couldn’t, and recent claims by the Minnesota GOPers that – surprisingly – bring Pawlenty’s unallotment actions up at, coincidentally, the same time Pawlenty officially announces his presidential run.

Here’s the deal – in January of 2010, I wrote a post titled “The Minnesota Budget Crisis, By The Numbers”. The post was about how Minnesota got into Governor TBag’s Unallotment mess. Suffice it to say, GOPers were makin’ (stuff) up about THAT deal, too.

In a nutshell, here’s what happened during the 2009 Legislative Session: the February 2009 Forecast predicted revenues of $31.1 Billion (rounded). Knowing that number, Gov. TBag proceeded to sign Spending Bills of $33.8 Billion (rounded) anyway.

This created a deficit of $2.7 Billion (rounded) from Governor-approved spending — remember, when TBag signed those spending bills, they were now law). A bill to balance that deficit, HF-2323, was passed and presented to Gov. TBag to sign. Except, TBag didn’t sign that revenue bill to balance the budget; he vetoed it.

Upon creating an unbalanced budget, rather than call a Special Session, TBag immediately claimed unilateral power to fix the problem he created, and then hit the campaign trail. As to TBag’s actions creating an anticipated budget problem, then using powers to deal with unanticipated budget problems? The Court was not amused.

The only reason GOPers today can use that “$32 Billion” number, is because in 2009 Pawlenty did something the Supreme Court ruled he couldn’t.

The reality is that the “$34 Billion” compromise number the Kochzellerstan crowd is crowing about today, is really the same “$33.8 Billion” number that Pawlenty signed into law, before he went all Nixonian by utilizing excessive - and illegalUnitary Executive Power (Nixon would be so proud!)

The bottom line is that in 2009, GOPer Governor Tim Pawlenty took state budgeting into unchartered waters; waters the Supreme Court eventually found illegal. In 2011, GOPer Majorities in both the State House and State Senate are again taking the state into unchartered waters – by refusing to negotiate and submit budget bills Governor Dayton would be willing to sign.

The fact that they are making (stuff) up by claiming to have “compromised” to a number Pawlenty already was at 2 years ago only goes to show, once again, that numbers don’t lie, but GOPers use numbers.

And, of course, anybody that falls for the BS GOPer line that they compromised to $34B also goes to show, once again, that those that forget the lessons of history tend to vote GOP.

***

That picture, above? I found it via a tweet by GOPer Freshman State Rep Kurt Daudt:

(crossposted at MnProgressiveProject; comments welcome there)

Ladies and Gentlemen, yours truly – the ol’ TwoPutter – is Guest Hosting this afternoon’s Friday Edition of “Quick On The UpTake” from 5:00 to 6:00pm on AM-950 KTNF, The Voice of Minnesota. “Quick On The UpTake” Host Mike McIntee is busily preparing for the last Political Party State Convention; the IP Party is meeting in Bloomington tomorrow. I’ll be joined in studio by Spot from The Cucking Stool!

And, to no surprise, we’ll be talking about The State Supreme Court’s spanking of Gov. TBag for creating a problem by 1- signing the next biennium’s spending bills into law and then 2- vetoing the revenue bill to match “income” to said lawfully-enacted spending bills (“balance the budget”) and then 3- violating state law by unilaterally slashing spending on bills TBag just signed; which, of course, was 4- BEFORE the start of the next biennium.

Spot has several great posts over at The Cucking Stool on TBag getting spanked; you’ll want to listen in to Spot’s take on this! As always, call 952-946-6205 to join the conversation!

As always on Friday’s Edition of Quick On The UpTake, we’ll also be getting a call from Dane Smith from GrowthAndJustice.org.

And just because we can, we’ll be giving away one copy of “False Witness! The Michele Bachmann Story (Volume 1), to one lucky listener — courtesy of AM-950 KTNF sponsor Common Good Books – so, pay attention and call in when asked!!!

Tomorrow (Saturday, May 8th), the ol’ TwoPutter will be Guest Hosting Radio Cafe with Cathy Hauser from 2:00 to 3:00 pm on AM950 – KTNF. I’ll be joined in-studio by Dusty Trice!

And we’ll be talking with Matt Entenza!

So, again, tune in the radio today and tomorrow to AM-950 KTNF, or listen live on your computer, here!

(cross posted from MnProgressiveProject; comments welcome there)

…confirming the current state of today’s Small Tent Party.

Well, “Hypocrisy, Thy Party Is GOP” fits, too.

A big ol’ hat-tip to CrooksAndLiars.com for this one – and a big ol’ (cheney)in’ raspberry at the GreedOverPrinciples party for the racism they – as usual – put on display at the Sotomayor Hearings:

Does anyone see the similarity between what those good ol’ Senate GOPer White Boys are doing to Judge Sonia Sotomayor, and what the good ol’ State GOPer White Boys did to Representative Laura Brod?

Seriously – why would anyone that’s not an aging and angry white male belong to today’s GOP? The angry white males running the GOP hates EVERYONE that’s not EXACTLY just like them.

Senator Durbin: “Of the one hundred and ten individuals who have served as Supreme Court Justices throughout our nation’s history, one hundred and six have been white males.”

MADDOW: That was Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois speaking at today‘s confirmation hearings for Sonia Sotomayor, President Obama‘s pick for the Supreme Court. It is widely assumed that Judge Sotomayor will be confirmed. She will be sworn in as the first ever Latino to serve on the Supreme Court, not to mention only the court‘s third woman.

Which means Republicans in the Senate are using the Sotomayor hearings, not so much as an opportunity to block the president‘s nominee, because they know that pretty much they can‘t, but rather to demonstrate the character of themselves in opposition which, it turns out, looks a little something like this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Many of Judge Sotomayor‘s public statements suggest that she may indeed allow or even embrace decision-making based on her biases and prejudices.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Already prejudiced against one of the parties.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Allow biases and personal preferences – the wise Latina woman quote.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Your wise Latina –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Your wise comment -

SEN. JEFF SESSIONS (R-AL): Justice Sotomayor has said that she accepts that her opinions, sympathies and prejudices will affect her rulings.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MADDOW: If your irony-sensing ulcer is spitting bile right now, let me confirm that that last guy there was Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, accusing Sonia Sotomayor of having a prejudice problem.

That would be the same Jeff Sessions whose own nomination for a federal judgeship could not make it out of the Republican-run Judiciary Committee in 1986 after testimony that he had called the NAACP un-American and communist-inspired, had joked that he thought the Ku Klux Klan was OK until he found out members of the Klan smoked pot, and that he agreed with another lawyer who said a Department of Justice attorney, who was white, was a disgrace to his race because he represented African-Americans.

And those are the things that he admitted to saying and tried to defend. The charges he denied included the allegation that he told a black attorney he should, quote, “Be careful about how he talked to white folks,” and that he called a black attorney “boy.”

Now Jeff Sessions is leading the charge against Sonia Sotomayor on the grounds that she has a prejudice problem. And Sen. Sessions is doing it as part of the hearing process that is basically certain to result in Judge Sotomayor‘s confirmation, which means that Sen. Sessions, specifically, and his party generally, are using this opportunity to stand on the giant media platform that is a Supreme Court nomination to proclaim themselves to the nation as opposed to the first ever nomination of a Latino to the Supreme Court, mostly on the basis of questions about race.

(crossposted from MnProgresiveProject)

“The legislature’s job is to write law. It’s the executive branch’s job to interpret law.” — George aWol Bush, Austin, Texas, Nov. 22, 2000

Hard to believe that the Supreme Court appointed Dumbya, when Dumbya obviously didn’t (and, for that matter, still doesn’t) have a clue about how government is actually supposed to function. The misAdministration Of Bush The Lesser is the epitome of “Republicans run on the platform “Government doesn’t work”; then they get elected and prove it.”

Another example of Boy Blunder demonstrating his disdain for the Rule Of Law was the nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme court; an appointment that managed to offend usually unoffendable Republican Senators.

Boy Blunder also demonstrated his disdain for the Rule Of Law with his reliance on Alberto Gonzales’s legal insanity guidance. Gonzo’s gonzo approach to law also caused some Republican Senators – especially Senator Arlen Specter – to become offended. For one example, watch and listen here:

Unfortunately, these Republicans couldn’t manage to become anything more than offended. It’s a shame they couldn’t manage to actually “do something” to prevent Boy Blunder And The Plunderers from running roughshod over The Rule Of Law and our Constitution.

Some Law Schools were offended enough, that they cancelled ‘Berto Gonzo’s scheduled addresses, and scheduled someone else. Here’s once such instance, that’s worth the read.

Slowly, the clock ticks. In five months and 13 days it will be January 20th, 2009 – The End Of An Error.

(originally published at MnBlue.com)