Who is real Doug LaMalfa?
He may seem like a typical conservative Republican, but the record indicates another side to this ethically challenged man for the voters to consider in November.
State Sen. LaMalfa is running for retiring U. S. Congressman Wally Herger’s seat in the newly drawn 1st Congressional District. He resigned his state position on Aug. 31.
Special vacancy elections for all 12 counties in the 4th State Senate District must now be held in the Nov. 6 general election at an estimated $2 million cost (see “A Special Election Will Cost a Bundle” by Alayna Shulman, The Redding Searchlight, July 21).
Candidates for LaMalfa’s state seat had six days to file the necessary paperwork and will have two months to campaign. Herger endorsed, and transferred his substantial campaign chest to LaMalfa, but many are not persuaded to support him.
Republican Pete Stiglich reports, “Incredibly, not a single candidate who (was eliminated) in the 1st Congressional primary race has announced their support of Doug LaMalfa.”
Rather, they have indicated support for his opponent, Democrat Jim Reed.
Gary Oxley (Independent): “I am endorsing Jim Reed for Congress because I believe he, rather than Doug LaMalfa, has the best interests of the American People at heart and will be the People’s best advocate in local, national and international affairs.”
Gregory Cheadle (Republican): “In Jim Reed I see a highly educated man with integrity, who can be a leader in D.C., not just another ‘go along to get along’ special interest entrenched Congressman. I will not endorse a candidate who makes hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in subsidies and selling water allotments at the expense of hard working Americans.”
Michael Dacquisto (Republican): “I think (Doug LaMalfa ) is dishonest and unethical and not trustworthy.”
Then there was the 2006 ethics charge that LaMalfa wrote a letter successfully persuading supervisors to support a massive Tehama County development project just two months after accepting a $32,000 campaign donation from the developers. As former Republican Sen. Johannessen said: “People don’t have altruistic ideas when they give that kind of money.”
To increase the subsidy available under federal rules, LaMalfa subdivided his family’s 2,000 acre rice farm into parcels for six family members, thus multiplying by six parts the $180,000 a year per person “farm welfare” limit. Since 1995, he and his family have received $4,694,840.00 in taxpayer-funded federal commodity subsidies. Of note, our Republican Congress is proposing a bill to make it harder for the public to track these payments.
La Malfa is known as “Do Nothing La Malfa” unless “he can use his position to make himself rich with no benefit to the North state.” (Greg Bale, Redding Searchlight, July 15)
Rice straw, which grows between rice plants, is expensive to remove. LaMalfa got a bill passed giving rice growers tax breaks to make bricks for erosion control from this straw, which they then can sell.
He drove a high-end Mustang Mark II and other similar cars at taxpayer expense until Gov. Brown ended this practice.
Sam Aanestad (Republican): “I have filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission against Doug LaMalfa.”
LaMalfa is currently under federal criminal investigation for creating, with his chief of staff, Mark Spannagel, an attack website (Sam4congress.com) before the primary election, loading it with disinformation against his former mentor, Sam Aanestad, and making it appear to be the work of candidate Dacquisto. Mr. La Malfa denied responsibility, yet the day the website appeared he wrote Spannagel a check for “media related services.” Mr. Aanestad came in third in the “top two” primary and retired from politics. Depending on the outcome of the federal investigation, he may decide to take legal action himself.
Finally, an officer for 10 years in the respected conservative California Republican Assembly, who wants to remain anonymous, urges Republicans to withhold their vote from LaMalfa, claiming he is “…surrounded by corruption at best and at worst, … is complicit in it.”
He urges Republicans to withhold their vote from LaMalfa. The CRA even kicked his chief of staff, Spannagel, out of their group for ethical misconduct for apparently creating a sham chapter and manipulating it to endorse Mitt Romney in 2008 (see the blog: http://www.rightondaily.com/2012/08/ca-01-update-do-not-under-any-circumstances-vote-for-doug-lamalfa).
Do we really want this man representing us in Congress?
Michele Spencer serves on the Communications Committee of the Nevada County Democratic Central Committee.
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