Following the Money Trail

Our guest writer, Haystacks Calhoun, has written this in-depth analysis of the current financial wranglings of the current election:

Introduction

As Election Day approaches, I have taken a careful look at funding received so far by the Democratic (Joe Pepitone/Nelson Thompson) and Republican (Sam Fiocchi/Carl Kirstein) campaigns, as well as the Cumberland County Democratic Organization (CCDO) and the Cumberland County Regular Republican Organization (CCRRO) (Question: Why is “regular” in the organization’s name? It’s nice they’re regular, as opposed to irregular, but I don’t think the rest of us need to know that.). The totals I provide here are based on formal reports submitted to ELEC through Oct. 15.

Fundraising to Date

To date, Pepitone/Thompson have raised $38,100 for the primary election and $46, 600 for the general election, for a grand total of $84,700. The CCDO began the year with $7,343 on hand and has raised $40,550 this year for a total of $47, 893. Fiocchi and Kirstein raised <$4,000 for the primary (the figure is inexact as reporting on amounts is limited when the amount is <$4,000) and $28,729 for a total of no more than $32,729. The CCRRO began the year with $1,079 on hand and has raised $71,358 for a total $73, 277. Combining the funds raised by the campaigns with those of their respective parties and the Ds have $132,593 and the Rs $106,006. Thus, to date the Ds have a $26,587 advantage.

Last year at this time, the D’s campaigns (Magazzu/Sjogren, Thompson) had raised $99,406 and the CCDO had $130,766 for a total of $230,172, while the Rs’ campaigns (Sheppard/Tonetta, Fiocchi) had raised 73,372 and the CCRRO had 97,795 for a total of 171,167. Thus, last year at this time, the Ds had raised $97, 579 more than they have raised this year, while the Rs had raised $65,161 more last year. It is important to note that last year was a gubernatorial election year (as well state legislators) and this no doubt drove the higher numbers for the party organizations. Nonetheless, it is clear that this year, while the Ds continue to out raise the Rs, the margin of difference is much closer ($26,587 as opposed to $59,905). Of course, much more money will pour in on both sides from now until Election Day; thus, these numbers must be taken with a grain of salt.

Contributions Coming from Outside the County

The Ds have often been criticized for accepting a lot of money from outside the County. To address this, I have identified all personal, business, and political organization (sans the Cumberland County Republican and Democratic Organizations) as either being local (i.e., in the County) or non-local for the two campaigns. I did not categorize unions, since they may be non-local address-wise but represent a number of local citizens; furthermore, it is impossible to track exactly where the money came from (i.e., local or non-local). The results are striking. This year the Pepitone/Thompson campaigns has received $25,100 from personal contributions and 30,200 from business contributions. Of these $11,600 (46%) of personal contributions were non-local and $22,800 (75%) of the business contributions were also non-local. Furthermore another $6,000 from extra county political organizations (i.e., Sweeney For Freeholder, Mantua Township Democratic Organization) has also been received.

Compare this with the Kirstein/Fiocchi campaign, where 0% of the personal ($11,162) and business ($330) contributions are from non-local sources. To be fair, the Rs have more contributions of $300 or less ($11,915-$15,915) than the Ds ($3,200) and these are not reported and cannot be traced as local or non-local. Also the Rs’ campaign (at least so far) has gotten more direct support from the CCRRO than the D’s campaign has gotten from the CCDO. However, contributions to the CCRRO, except for a few union contributions ($1,270) and non-traceable $28,240 contributions of $300 or less, are from local sources as well.

Union Support

There has also been a lot of scuttlebutt that the unions have been abandoning the Ds. To address this, I have compared the unions’ contributions of this year with those of last year (running through mid-October). Table 1 shows the union contributions to either the Ds’ campaigns or the CCDO for this year (through Oct. 15) and last year. While I wouldn’t place much stock in the differences in amounts (last year being a state election year; this year’s data being incomplete), it is striking to see the number of union groups that have not yet given to the Ds this year. Of the 27 groups that gave to the Ds last year, 14 (52%) have given nothing so far this year. Most notable is the near abandonment of the unions that represent government workers. Couple this with the fact that the Rs actually have received (through contributions to CCRRO) some money ($1,270) from union groups (e.g., NJ Law Enforcement PAC, NJ Law Enforcement Commanding Officers, NJ State Firemen’s Benevolent Assoc., Vineland-Buena PBA), and the Ds have reason to be quite concerned.

WTF?! Observations

Any careful scrutiny of campaign contributions produces a few WTF?! findings and this one is no different. Below are my two “favorites.”

1. What are the odds?!

Personal contributions to campaigns should come from those who believe in the candidates. That’s why I have (rarely) chosen to give to a candidate’s campaign. Given this assumption, I must conclude that a remarkable coincidence took place on 8 June 2010. On this date ten people, not from this county, Kirk Applegate, L. Jarred Corn, Richard Culbertson, John Dailey, Joseph Hoffmann, James Miles Jr., Todd Saler, Nina Sorello, Michael Welding, and Harry Wills, all chose to give $500 to the Pepitone/Thompson campaign. Now it is remarkable enough that ten people all chose to give the same amount on the same day. But wait! There’s more! They all work for the same accounting firm: Bowman & Company, LLP from Voorhees, New Jersey! What are the odds?!

2. Who goes there?

In the Pepitone/Thompson report submitted to ELEC on 4 Oct. there is this contribution cited: “MTDEC, Inc. (corporation), 124 Barnsboro Rd. Sewell, NJ.” I hate cryptic acronyms and looked into this, and found out that this “corporation” that gave to Pepitone/Thompson’s campaign is actually the Mantua Township Democratic Executive Committee!

Summary

As an independent Democrat, I can think of no good reason for supporting the Democratic freeholder ticket for Cumberland County. Nearly half (46%) of the campaign’s personal contributions come from outside the County and 75% of their business contributions are from outside the County. Furthermore, they still get windfalls from other Ds outside the County, such as Sweeney ($5,000); and the Mantua Township Democratic Executive Committee ($1,000). In a nutshell, they are dependent on outside sources for their income (a form of welfare, if you will), the people whom they actually represent in Cumberland County showing little to no enthusiasm for their campaign. Furthermore, even some of this support has eroded, many of the unions choosing (so far at least) not to pony up the dough.

This analysis begs the question: “If they have no support, then how do they win?” And it can only be concluded that they rely on the poor. The poor cannot contribute financially but they can vote, especially when the buses come rolling into their neighborhoods. However, the local Ds don’t represent the poor so much as they take advantage of them. Do the poor really have it better off in our county than other counties? I don’t think so. This tactic by the Ds must be broken. If it successful again, then their strategy will be: “Let’s keep the County poor because it wins us elections. In fact, let’s get more poor people here because that will strengthen our base.”

If the above sounds too cynical, think again. So far this campaign, they have dragged someone into the election (Greco) who isn’t running. Furthermore, their lack of a moral compass allows them to take ten “personal” contributions for the same amount, on the same day, from people who work for the same out of county company. Such personal contributions may be legal but they clearly game the system. Also, let’s not forget their use of acronymic camouflage of “MTDEC, Inc” to hide the contribution from an outside political organization.

For God’s sake get out and vote on Tuesday.

Table 2.  TOTALS FROM “EFO Thompsons & Pepitone for Freeholders

NAME ADDRESS OCCUPATION Employer AMOUNT ($) ELECTION
PERSONAL
Spindler , Barry Bridgeton Insurance Agent Bollinger Insurance, Short Hills 3,000 Primary
Spindler , Barry Bridgeton Insurance Agent Bollinger Insurance, Short Hills 3,000 General
Cappelli, Louis Woodbury Attorney Florio, Parruci, et al., LLC 2,000 General
Pirolli , Michael A. Bridgeton Attorney Michael Pirolli, Millville 2,000 General
Bucknam, Robert W. Hammonton Attorney Archer & Greiner PC 1,300 General
Kizner, Mitchell Vineland Attorney Flaster, Greenberg 1,000 General
Pirolli , Michael A. Bridgeton Attorney Michael Pirolli, Millville 1,000 Primary
Robinson, Arnold Millville Attorney Robinson, Andubar, LLC 1,000 General
Salmon, Edward H. Bridgeton Consultant Salmon Ventures, Millville 1,000 General
Applegate , Kirk N. Stratford CPA Bowman & Co., LLP, Voorhees 500 Primary
Balicki , Robert M. [Warden] Millville [Corrections] [Cumberland County] 500 Primary
Belland , Mark Pilesgrove Twp. (Salem) Attorney Mark Belland, Cherry Hill 500 Primary
Bionde, William A. Vineland Insurance Agent Bionde Insurance 500 General
Corn , L. Jarred Voorhees CPA Bowman & Co., LLP, Voorhees 500 Primary
Culbertson , Richard W. Jr. Cherry Hill CPA Bowman & Co., LLP, Voorhees 500 Primary
Dailey , John F. Voorhees CPA Bowman & Co., LLP, Voorhees 500 Primary
Embden, Florence Millville Homemaker NA 500 General
Frankle, Norman Jr. Port Elizabeth None None 500 General
Gibson , Lisa Marlton [Not indicated.] [Not indicated.] 500 Primary
Hoffmann , Joseph Berlin CPA Bowman & Co., LLP, Voorhees 500 Primary
Jones, Albert Millville Work Leader Atlantic City Electric 500 General
Long , Douglas Woodbury Attorney Long Marmero & Assoc. , LLP, Woodbury 500 Primary
Miles., James J. Jr Erial CPA Bowman & Co., LLP, Voorhees 500 Primary
Russell, Brock Cape May Point Attorney Self-employed, Millville 500 General
Saler , Todd S. Sicklerville CPA Bowman & Co., LLP, Voorhees 500 Primary
Sampoli, Louis Westmont Attorney Self-employed, Blackwood 500 General
SorellE , Nina S. Mickleton CPA Bowman & Co., LLP, Voorhees 500 Primary
Welding , Michael J. Mullica Hill CPA Bowman & Co, LLP., Voorhees 500 Primary
Wills , Harry P. Somerdale (Camden) CPA Bowman & Co., LLP, Voorhees 500 Primary
Witt, Fran National Park Architect Joseph F. Mckernon, Cherry Hill 500 General
Packman, Stephen Haddonfield Attorney Archer & Greiner PC 300 General
TOTAL 25,100
Local 13,500
Non-Local 11,600
BUSINESSES
T&M Assoc. Red Bank Engineers NA 7,800 General
Adams, Rehmann, & Heggan Assoc. Inc. Hammonton Engineers NA 4,000 General
Romano, Hearing Testa & Knorr PC Vineland CPA NA 3,200 General
Adams, Rehmann, & Heggan Assoc. Inc. Hammonton Engineers NA 2,500 Primary
Archer & Greiner, PC Haddonfield Law firm NA 2,000 Primary
Correctional Health Services Inc Brentwood, TN Healthcare NA 2,000 General
Archer & Greiner, PC Haddonfield Law firm NA 1,000 General
Consulting Engineer Services Sewell Engineers NA 1,000 General
Romano, Hearing Testa & Knorr PC Vineland CPA NA 1,000 Primary
Whibco, Inc. Bridgeton Sand Mining NA 1,000 General
Aulfto Painting Inc. Minotola Painting NA 500 General
Bach Associates Haddon Heights Engineers NA 500 General
Fralinger Engineering PA Bridgeton Engineers NA 500 Primary
Fralinger Engineering PA Bridgeton Engineers NA 500 General
French & Parrello (Corporation) Wall Twp. Engineers NA 500 Primary
Greyhawk Moorestown Construction NA 500 General
Joseph F. McKernan Jr. RA Cherry Hill Architects NA 500 Primary
Whibco, Inc. Bridgeton Sand Mining NA 500 Primary
Miletta Brothers Cedarville [Contracting] NA 350 Primary
S&J Machinery Cedarville [Not indicated] NA 350 Primary
TOTALS 30,200
Local 7400
Non-Local 22,800
UNIONS
District Council 711 PAC Fund Egg Harbor Painting etc. NA 5,200 Primary
CWA Local 1036 CPC Account West Trenton Government workers NA 2,500 Primary
NJ State Laborers PAC Monroe Twp. Government workers NA 2,000 Primary
BAC Administrative District Council of NJ Bordentown Bricklayers, Allied Craft workers NA 1,000 Primary
Ironworker Local Union #350 PAF Ventnor City (Atlantic) Ironwork NA 1,000 Primary
NJ Regional Council of Carpenters Non Partisan Political Education Committee Edison Carpenters 1,000 Primary
Plumbers & Pipefitters LU No. 9 PAC Englishtown Plumbing NA 1,000 General
Sheet Metal Workers LU #27 PAC Farmingdale Metal work NA 1,500 General
Cement Masons Local 592 PAC Philadelphia Masonry NA 500 General
Hospital Professionals & Allied Employees  Fund Emerson Healthcare workers NA 500 General
Insulators Local #89 Trenton Insulators NA 500 Primary
IUPAT Local 1331 Glassboro Painters etc. NA 500 General
TOTALS 17,200
POLITICAL
Sweeney for Freeholder

Mullica Hill (Gloucester) NA NA 5,000 Primary
M[antua] T[ownship] D[emocratic] E[xecutive] C[ommittee] 124 Barnsboro Road NA NA 1000 General
TOTALS 6000
CONTRIBUTIONS LESS THAN $300 NA NA NA
200 Primary
3000 General

Table 3. Total Contributions to Fiocchi & Kirstein for Freeholder

NAME ADDRESS OCCUPATION Employer AMOUNT ($) ELECTION
PERSONAL
Swanson, Robert Vineland Retired NA 4,000 (IK) General
Facemyer, Gregory Bridgeton CPA Self-employed 1,912 (IK) General
Woodruff, J. Alan Bridgeton Retired NA 1,500 General
Livingston, Justus Bridgeton Retired NA 1,000 General
Milam, Mary Vineland Retired NA 1,000 General
Soos, Andrew J. Jr. Bridgeton Retired NA 1,000 General
Cooper, Paul Bridgeton Retired NA 400 General
Hemple, David Bridgeton CEO Century Savings Bank 350 General
TOTALS 11,162
Local 11,162
Non-Local 0
BUSINESSES
Fralinger Engineering Bridgeton Engineers NA 330 General
TOTALS 330
Local 330
Non-Local 0
POLITICAL
Cumberland County Republican Org. Bridgeton NA NA 5664 (IK) General
TOTALS 5664 (IK)
CONTRIBUTIONS LESS THAN $300 NA NA NA
>4000 Primary
11915 General
TOTALS >15,915

Table 4.  Total Contributions to Cumberland County Democratic Organization

NAME ADDRESS OCCUPATION Employer AMOUNT ($)
PERSONAL
Robinson, Arnold Millville Attorney Self-employed 4200
Kavanagh, Brendan Millville Attorney [Kavanagh, Kavanagh, Dilazzero] 2000
Guiodarini, David Vineland Owner Briotz 1500
Quinn, James Millville President Quinn Broadcasting 1500
McCann, Kevin Bridgeton Attorney Chance & McCann 1500
Fiorani, Harry Bridgeton Real Estate Equitable Realty & Insurance 1000
Spindler, Barry Bridgeton Insurance Bollinger Insurance 1000
Long, Douglas Woodbury Attorney Long & Marmero, LLP 1000
Simmerman, Gary Bridgeton Retired NA 1000
Biondi, A. William Vineland President Biondi Insurance 500
Guerner, Phil Franklinville VP Pure Earth Recycling 500
Marion, Sandra Winslow VP ENR Contracting 500
Duffy, Edward Vineland Attorney Self-employed 500
Errickson, George S. Millville Manager Delaware River and Bay Authority 500
Friedman, Harvey Bridgeton Retired NA 500
Rainear, Don Strathmere [Adminstrator] CCIA 500
McCann, Kevin Bridgeton Attorney Chance & McCann 1000*
McCann, Kevin Bridgeton Attorney Chance & McCann 1500*
BUSINESSES
Lipman, Antonelli, Batt, Gibson Vineland Law NA 500
Sun Bancorp Vineland Banking NA 500
UNIONS
UA Local Union 322 Plumbers and Pipefitters PAC Winslow Plumbing NA 3000
Iron Workers Local 399 PAC Westville Ironwork NA 2600
Laborers Local 172 Trenton Laborers NA 2000
DC 711 PAC Egg Harbor Painting etc NA 2000
IUPAT DC 21 PAC Philadelphia Painters 1500
BAC Administrative DC PAC Bordentown Bricklayers etc NA 1000
NJ Council of Carpenters Non-Partisan PAC Edison Carpentry NA 1000
POLITICAL
Jo. L. Pearson EBO DON PAC Bridgeton NA 500
Contributions of $300 or Less NA NA NA 5750

Table 5. Contributions to Cumberland County Republican Organization

NAME ADDRESS OCCUPATION Employer AMOUNT ($)
PERSONAL
Facemyer, Gregory J. Bridgeton CPA Self-employed 11,706*
Swift, James Millville Attorney Self-employed 10,932*
Kirstein, Carl Bridgeton Retired NA 4,635
Baker, Richard Buena Retired NA 1,580
Litwack, Robert Bridgeton Attorney Self-employed 1,265
Surdam, Walter Avalon CEO Caem Glass Inc 1,100
Marchand, Arthur Bridgeton Attorney Self-employed 900
Bertacchi, Louise T. Millville Retired NA 700
Carson, Ruth Vineland Insurance Self-employed 675
Tonetta, Richard Vineland Attorney Self-employed 675
Zerella, Henry Vineland Attorney Self-employed 650
Ruiz-Mesa, Mario Vineland Insurance Self-employed 520
Sheppard, Thomas Cedarville Co-Owner Sheppard Farms 515
Loyle, Charles Vineland Retired NA 510
Woodruff,  J.  Alan Bridgeton Retired NA 510
Consalo, Mildred Vineland Retired NA 500
D’Arrigo, Chris Bridgeton Attorney Self-employed 500
Harper, Mary Anne Bridgeton Chief of Staff U.S. House of Representatives 500
Davis, Joan Bridgeton Retired NA 450
Swanson, Charles Vineland Retired NA 450
Shewlakow, Stanley Millville Retired NA 430
Sauro, Susan Vineland [Businesswoman] Sauro Water Care 425
Sawyers, Ned Vineland Real Estate Self-employed 425
D’Arrigo, Cos Bridgeton Attorney Self-employed 400
Scarpa, Anthony Vineland Retired NA 400
Fiocchi, Samuel L. Sr. Vineland Retired NA 375
Bealey,  James B. Bridgeton Petrol Sales Hough Petroleum 367
Drastal, Louis A. Vineland Retired NA 340
Ferus, Troy B. Vineland Retired NA 330
Gana, Francis Vineland Retired NA 330
Albrecht, Douglas Vineland [Businessman] Bob Albrecht Tire & Service 325
Verderose, Alfred Vineland Attorney Self-employed 325
Fiocchi, Donald Vineland Retired NA 320
Noto, Gerald Vineland Retired NA 250
Silva, Jose Jr. Vineland Attorney Self-employed 130
BUSINESSES
Arthritis Rheumatology Assoc of SJ Vineland Healthcare NA 5,100
Century Savings Bank Vineland Banking NA 840
Sun Bancorp Vineland Banking NA 675
Freitag Funeral Home Bridgeton Funeral Services NA 650
Giordano’s Recycling Vineland Recycling NA 600
DeRossi & Son Vineland [Clothing Co.] NA 550
Basile & Testa PA Vineland Attorneys NA 450
Briatz, Inc. Vineland [Alcohol beverages retail] NA 450
AMK Glass Inc. Vineland [Manufacturing] NA 400
Pampered Pup Kennels Millville Kennels NA 158
UNIONS
NJ Law Enforcement PAC Fairton Law Enforcement NA 500
NJ Law Enforcement Commanding Officers Fairton Law Enforcement NA 400
NJ State Firemen’s Benevolent Assoc. Rahway Firefighting NA 250
Vineland Buena PBA 266 Vineland Law Enforcement NA 120
NONPROFIT
American Legion Vineland NA 100
POLITICAL
LoBiondo for Congress Marmora NA NA 688
Bridgeton Election Committee Bridgeton NA NA 322
Contributions of $300 or Less NA NA NA 28,240

 

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One Response to Following the Money Trail

  1. Your completely right with this piece..

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