Money, Who Had It

Aloha friends and welcome to others. This is a special edition, if there are such to these periodic reports. This is most about campaign money and where we go, money-wise, from here. Some info can be wonky, so continue at your own pace. Please let me know if any numbers are incorrect. If you don’t care about the money, scroll to the last page for a quick political update.

Writing periodically to Republicans and conservatives, mostly in Hawaii, I email rather than blog because this is a (quasi-) private discussion. The reports, on-site updates from mainland conferences and conventions, and special editions augment what you should hear from the Republican Party. My perspective is that of conservative Republican, former State Party Chairman and Vice Chairman and member of the RNC, who campaigns here and on the mainland. Mostly ‘stuff’ you don’t have on your radar or don’t have time to research, my comments are not personal – perceived favorable or unfavorable. We won’t always agree but we should be informed. Let me know if you want to be removed from the list. Similarly, please feel free to forward this report to other conservatives and they can write to get on the list. Conservatives need to know that they are not alone in Hawaii.

Thank you each for your role in electing conservatives and Republicans. Thank you to candidates who stepped forward and to their supporters. Congratulations to the winners and their teams.

Money and such

Overall, Romney (Campaign, RNC, RNC-Romney Victory) raised $1.019B and ended with 1M CoH. Not certain another candidate could have raised that. Obama raised slightly more and ended with a tad of debt. Overall spending on the Pres campaign, $6-8B.

Record Presidential ad spending. Just shy of $1B. Romney $583M (213M campaign, 370M outside), Obama 401M (336M campaign, 65M outside). Top ten states: OH $197M, FL 192M, VA 152M, CO 81M, IA 74M, NC 70M, NV 60M, WI 45M, NH 44M, PA 35M.

We couldn’t keep up without Super PACs. Liberals will have you believe our Super PACs failed. They didn’t. Citizens United just leveled the playing field. There are issues of power and control.

RNC has zero debt and $3M CoH, outraising the DNC $293M to $181M this year. DNC ended with $20+M debt and $9.7M CoH. Fmr RNC chair Steele had left the RNC with $25M debt when Priebus was elected.

We said that “pragmatism would win over feigned outrage.” After pledging NOT to help Akin MO, NRSC put $760k into the race.

HI Congressional race, with comment about my favorite rep (Meyer) Djou had no paid staff, instead using funds for campaigning. Bet he is not in debt.

Mayoral race with lots of PRP money

HI Senate: SA says Lingle and Hirono spent $5.5M each. Lingle has 210k debt including a 100k self-loan, Hirono 239k debt much from an earlier cycle. Interesting that Lingle thought she was close enough to use $100k of her own. In the last report (Backward and Forward) I wrote: “Her October report shows how she spent YOUR contributions. Hellriech $5434/month, Lee (not me) $4306/month (July report), Heck $4282, Klompus (he) 4198 and the other Klompus (she) another 4198, Sakamoto 3982, Aveiro 3576, I am just scratching the surface here, Hofer 3480, Lagareta (he) 3632, Rowley 3258, Smith on the Big Island 3228, Dodson 2880, Yonenaka 2966, Caires 2600, Parsons 2362, Pendelton 1830 and many more. This is in addition to benefits and expenses paid by the campaign. Most staff contributed little, if at all, to her campaign. Lodging at the San Francisco Westin St Francis, Las Vegas Venetian, Marquis NYC, San Diego Hilton, and Washington Hilton in DC. And, there was that 24-hour cable TV station thing.” More observations: Thomason (she) was not on the payroll but is probably included in the $13,000/month average paid to IMS for accounting services. Hotels not in the last report, Hyatt in Houston, Baltimore, and Indianapolis, Ritz-Carlton St Louis, Palmer House Hilton Chicago, St Regis DC.

HRP: federal and state. Reporting is different for state and federal accounts. When the data is posted at I’ll let you know. HRP state account has 28k CoH. At the December state cmte meeting HRP announced 87.8k CoH (about 28k state and 60k federal) consisting of 16k for mortgage, 67k for operations, 4.5k county money. HRP still has $47.6k debt. “Leadership” asked donors to help keep Exec Dir Blom employed beyond Dec 20 when the RNC money runs out. Bottom line is a net of about 14.3k to run the party and pay bills as of Dec 16.

Treasurer Klompus (she) reported (again in absentia, again) that debt reached its zenith at $102k (that was February). However, it was simple to find in FEC reports that debt exceeded that amount four times; 103.8k last October, 108.5k last November, 104.8k in January and 105.5k in March. I don’t THINK she was trying to hide anything, she just messed up. Following five months of averaging about 3k/month to pay down debt, in the final month of the cycle Chang paid off about 10k of the debt. If the state cmte were to do their election analysis, they should ask why Chang didn’t instead assist candidates to win.

Chang/Hellriech and the current Exec Cmte grew the debt to $108,000 in the 2010 cycle with then-chair Kaauwai and Exec Dir Nonaka. The same officers who are our current Exec cmte, with Lingle’s support, did a coup on Kaauwai, and Nonaka decided to make money for himself rather than help erase the debt he stuck on HRP. We predicted here that this Chang/Hellriech/Liu team would be incapable of erasing the debt this cycle. The Kaauwai-Nonaka legacy remains as C/H/L and virtually the same Exec Cmte failed to pay off the debt and help support candidates in the 2012 cycle. The trend for debt is downward, currently 47.6k, and that is good. At this rate, it will be April or May before debt is gone. Without the RNC again bailing Chang out, staff for 2013 will be difficult – who desires to work if your boss can’t raise payroll?

Candidates: Raising money is not easy. Harder when your party has no message and no support. Several candidates did very well and a few were adequate. Many candidates clearly did not try at all. I continue to question the HRP strategy of recruiting candidates for no other reason than ego, the candidate’s and the HRP. Poor candidates do not “tie down” a democrat and they drain our resources, contributions and volunteers. Some CSC reports are difficult to decipher because candidates stick all sorts of numbers in all sorts of places. Some are transparent, some not so much. The candidate with the most money, usually won. But, not always. You must raise enough to get out your message. Circumstances include where you’re running and whether you face an incumbent, among others. PAC involvement in specific races is not included. With folks such as Nonaka taking credit for elections, we’ll note that a majority of winning candidates shop at Costco though I have yet to see Costco take credit. Campaigns with many report amendments (looking at you, friend Fontaine) ought to look at their procedures or Treasurer. Between the lack of Republicans in races and the fund-challenged candidates, the others should have raised more funds.

For the wonky, take a look at the attached Word document. Candidate ’12 CSC summary On the attachment, moneys are for the cycle. Some Dems had expensive Primary challenges so not all the “Spent” was used against the Republican in the General election. Several candidates had money from a past cycle so they may have spent more than raised this cycle. CoH is as of November 6, though some candidates hide unpaid expenditures in a next report. Reports were due to CSC by December 6. Debt may be bills not paid or self-loans which the candidate may never repay. You’ll want to keep these numbers in mind from CSC for 2010 (’12 not posted) races (average): House Dems spent $25k, Republicans 14k. Winning House campaigns spent $40k, losers spent $10k. Senate Dems spent $86k, Republicans 17k. Winning Senate campaigns spent $96k, losing $38k. Go to the CSC site to see how your candidate spent your money; money to charities, 85 cent parking reimbursement, 20 cents for one stamp, funds to other campaigns, paying their own way to conventions and meetings they would otherwise attend…. you may not want to look. Very uncommon for opponents to use the same printer. One candidate paid 4k for a website, another gave 6k to charity BEFORE the election.

Candidates, if you need to hire staff, pay a consultant or pay workers for a state house race, you should evaluate whether you should run. If you cannot inspire volunteers for a state house race, well, don’t quit your day job. Same for a state senate race.

MOSTs for this cycle. Raised by a Republican, Aiona $68k (Pine at 152k, if she is a Republican). Most Senate raised Hemmings 47k, Slom 36k. 0/15 Republican senate candidates raised more than $50k. 7/15 Senate races raised less than 5k, including two under $400. Most House raised Johanson 58k, Hapai 40k. Five R House candidates raised more than 35k. 11 House races raised less than 3k, including seven under $1k. Fastest-mostest, Aiona $68k from September-November for HNL Council 6.

A bunch, three and a half pages, of candidates signed the state pledge to stay below spending limits. Some sign to make a serious statement about the ridiculous amount of money in politics (I like ridiculous amounts of money), for example S9 Slom is <$35k and H3 Hapai is <$19k. For most it is for show, they can’t raise that much anyway. The pledge is required for candidates who choose to receive public funds. Someone tell me if I am reading this correctly, for FY12 (July ’11-June ’12) a total of about $200k in public funding was doled out but it cost taxpayers nearly $570k in payroll, contracts and admin to run the program??

21 dem (and one of ‘our’ non-partisan candidates) took public (i.e. your) funds to the tune of $146k. No Republicans. Hawaii County gave out an additional $215k.

Some PAC info

-Citizens for Responsive Gov’t (Say affiliated) raised $82k, spent 182k. 57k in direct to candidates, almost all early in the cycle.

-Hawaii Family Advocates (right leaning) raised 8k, spent 8k focused on Fuku (wah) with 0 CoH and a tad in debt. Surveys, some Independent Expenditures (I.E.)

-Hawaii Solutions Super PAC (right leaning) raised 36k, spent 34k with 2k CoH and 1k in debt. Several surveys/polls, mail, radio, Nonaka was paid by his own PAC. Can’t see the revenue for the Marumoto fundraiser at Waialae though with info availabe, the event about broke even.

-PRP Super PAC (you probably heard of them) raised $3.2M, spent 3.2M mostly against Cayetano with 101k in bills left to pay.

-Sierra Club Super PAC raised $48k, spent 35k to do left leaning (‘cept a couple of endorsed Rs) damage.

-MADPAC Super PAC for fiscal conservatives (for Cayetano) raised 1,800, spent 1,500 with 300 CoH. Largest expenditures were a tent and a contrbution to another PAC.

-Republicans for Life raised 12k, spent 11.6k, 4.4k directly to candidates. Houlk, Smart and White were the biggest contributors.

-Oahu League PAC raised 9.5k, spent 8.9k, 91% direct to candidates. Lee and Toomey were the top individual contributors.

-SaveOurHonolulu Super PAC, mostly anti-rail, raised $271k, spent 265k with 5 CoH.

-Planned Parenthood Super PAC raised 6k, spent 6k.

-Workers for a Better Hawaii raised $730k, spent $738k.

-NRA PAC distributed $5,500 to two R and two D senators, and four R and 10 D house members.

-Hawaii Republican Assembly raised 2.4k, spent 3.1k.

Chang asked for comments on his “fundraising plan.”

This Chang/Hellriech/Liu team has been through a cycle (two now), they (should) know the drill. They should know the donors, expenses and political environment. I hope these suggestions help.

Some of you know that it is difficult and time-consuming to run the state party, if one actually does the work. Been there, done that. Thank you for whatever time and effort you put into whichever duty that you volunteered to accomplish.

-You told us in July and again in November that you’d present a plan in December. It is December and you brought a not-been-staffed draft document for input and comments. You have a lot of excuses. But, you told us we’d get a plan.

*The budget was not on the meeting agenda so it is obvious you hadn’t remembered it. Calling BS on the Thomason(her)/Klompus(her) out-of-town-so-I-couldn’t-do-my-homework (budget) excuse. I am sorry to not have reminded you earlier but I am not responsible for you. The budget is what is required by Rules to be presented for approval before the end of the year. No surprise, the requirement has been in the Rules longer than you have been in the party. You and rules chair Thomason (he) have a recurring problem in following or understanding the rules. You’ll see below why this is a Rule and why it is important, to everyone.

*You failed to do the past two required budgets (and this exec and state cmte allowed it) but you should have data. Thomason/Klompus are not responsible for the budget, you are. The relevance – if you don’t know how much money you need, the state cmte can’t know if your fundraising plan accomplishes the requirement. You are really late – without a draft budget in advance, you couldn’t expect the cmte to just show up in December (if a quorum attended) to approve a budget without study, except that, yes, it is our state cmte. Don’t rush because crap in=crap out. Please avoid the mistake of raising funds for only this year to operate (the last guy tried that) and kill the debt you helped build; you also need funds for 2013 electioneering and for the 2014 Victory Fund. That is the budget, which then leads to your plan.

*I only glanced at your first, not-been-staffed, draft fundraising plan so I apologize if I miss something. I am not an accountant so some of my terminology may be incorrect. If there are errors in analysis please disregard that item but the plan has a couple holes you’ll want to fill.

  1. It will be helpful to provide the requirement for the two-year 2014 election cycle, when you finally have it. You will have that when you have an approved budget.
  1. In your first, never-been-staffed, draft fundraising plan you cite Section 416 which states that you shall appoint a finance cmte (you didn’t follow that rule, either) who shall develop a plan. For now, let’s use what you presented because you don’t have a finance cmte.
  1. If a plan does not accomplish the goal, it is not a plan. You know from your military staff school that it is called a ‘throw away’ because it was meant to be thrown away. Your ‘plan’ is a throw away because the state cmte can’t tell if your plan accomplishes the not-given requirement. Same with any portion of the plan e.g. please present data to demonstrate that your finance cmte will produce as you project. You are not in campaign school. This is a real-life small business. Some people, Blom’s salary, vendors and candidates, count on you doing this correctly.
  1. Please clarify that the House caucus farewell is a HRP event. CSC reports raise questions about where the money went from the Marumoto farewell event. A net of $9k is a pretty low bar. 200 people x $45= 9k does not account for major donor contributions. If all you expect is $9k, perhaps Hellrich, Liu or you should simply instead get on the phone and raise money. If you are going to have the staff (if any) and volunteers do a successful event with four weeks notice, you/Hellriech/Liu need to go to work and make this at least a $40k net event. If, however, this event is to build the party, move it to your political plan, if you have a political plan.
  1. You write that we’re again having Lincoln Dinner, not Day, though in the state meeting you said the event could be anytime February to April. From your plan (you give a goal, cost and ‘profit’ for the House event), you mention only a goal for the LD event so your net is your $100k revenue minus your costs. From your single last-year major event, you had about a 40% cost of fundraising (difficult to establish because you hid the specifics from the cmte and party). You should lower that if you are able. Also, please account for revenue from major donor contributions. If you net only $60k, however, it will ALMOST cover CAM for one year; no staff, no electioneering, no Starbucks, no Foodland for dinner (that’s a shout-out to Nonaka and Kaauwai, not you). You say your plan counts on a big-name speaker, Cruz or Rubio, and greatly increased young Republican involvement but you write that you expect LESS attendees and considerably less (43% less) revenue than last year. It doesn’t matter, per se, what model or data you use but you should present more to the state cmte than ‘oh, it will be less than last year.’ They should expect more data because this becomes their plan. As Hellriech says in your GOP newsletter “we [HRP] just need local leaders [state cmte] to inspire them [members] and hold them [C/H/L and the exec cmte] accountable for the tasks that need to be done.”
  1. 20/800. You have to now mentioned a 20/800 sustaining donor plan. The plan you presented says 25/800. We had 23,000 members. You said you have 10,000 party members from the Pres caucus. Vice chair Ready says you’re already down to 8,000. 800 participants is a big number. Kaauwai modeled the program on other states, do they get 10% participation? In your current FEC report, there are currently 17 individual participants, let’s say less than 25, in case I missed a couple. The state cmte should ask that you temper your expectations, or at least not expect that all 800 will begin on January 1. Hellriech, your most experienced fundraiser for campaigns other than HRP, told us that you had not discussed this with her when she announced your 20/400 or 25/400, which you were quick to dismiss. You may want to revisit your numbers.
  1. No mention of the Capital Campaign for HQ mortgage. Several of us met last years’ Capital Campaign cmte goals. Though Hellriech says her long-time-in-coming Yardsale is not for HRP operations, it should to be included because it has an impact on HRP fundraising and the revenue goes to the same place, albeit ‘fenced’ for the mortgage. i.e. she says it will be in the Spring, about the time of your LD event or May convention. Recall that last year you failed to get sponsors for the state convention because it was immediately following your late LD. YOU do NOT want to get in $ competition with Hellriech.  With her conflict of interest in temporary hiatus, between being state party NCW and being paid to raise solely for a candidate, you should have her attention. Regardless, you are the chair and Capital Campaign and the mortgage is YOUR responsibility.
  1. I don’t think your intent is to present a first-quarter fundraising plan. You gave out a two-year plan with nothing after March. You asked the state cmte, your grassroots organization, to give you fundraising ideas but that may be a question better suited for your finance team, then researched and then presented to the state cmte. Some of your finance team may have raised for an organization at this level (used to be $1M/year small business, now 500k/year). Fundraising events are related to the political plan and all the finance and political events are timed to complement, not conflict, with each other. Candidates are also waiting on you.
  1. No need to list the exec cmte as resources for the fundraising plan. Ask Thomason (she). They aren’t. You should clarify whether the finance cmte ‘quota’ counts for major events to account for (no pun) double counting in your revenue projections. Put a date on the recruiting of the finance cmte, you can see you are already months behind schedule.
  1. Then there is the Section 417 thing that says you can’t spend money if it isn’t in the budget or plan, of which we have neither (yet another rule you and Thomason missed).

*Finally, get some help. Your senior advisors, Hellriech/Liu, should do more than just the ‘senior’ part of their job. This should have been sorted out before you brought this to the few who attended the state mtg. Our state cmte, bless their hearts, should help point out these issues. However, you are responsible. Rules allow you now only a week to draft your budget, send it out for study, convene the state cmte and gain approval of your budget. Then, you can submit a real fundraising plan. I hope these suggestions help.

Before the next ‘regular’ periodic report:

-Senator ….. Hanabusa? Schatz? Waihee? Hannemann? Cayetano? Oshiro? Case? Dods? Shinseki?  There are more.  If Hanabusa, who’s next in line for CD1?

-Section 418. Rules require an audit. Chang was supposed to appoint, with state cmte approval, three Republicans or a certified accountant by December 1 “to audit the financial statements.” Another ignored rule. They owe a report by the end of April. Chang skipped it last year. The year before, the rules were ‘massaged’ to provide for a ‘financial report’ as opposed to an audit.

-Dems (Wooley) have begun fundraising. Don’t get left behind.

-US House organizes and if Republicans split their votes for someone other than Boehner, Pelosi could end up as House Speaker.

-Smart Business Hawaii. December only, 50% off membership

-East Oahu Monthly meeting 8:30 AM Saturday January 5. Come see. HRP is messing up the coming district caucus meetings as Walden and Nonaka push around Chang and Ready.

-Listing this as a TEA party interest because of the state and national tax issues this year. Freedom Works’ President Kibbe speaking January 9 at the SBH Annual Business Conference

-I needed five minutes of graphics to simplify the cliff issue.

-Silence from HRP as Slom calls for Nago’s resignation at Elections Commission. No Chang, Hellriech or Liu. The Green Party, for goodness sake, filed suit! The State AG and DoE cower as they cancel the Moanalua Orchestra charity fundraiser. HRP=nothing. Do something. Say something.

-RNC Winter meeting in Charlotte, January 23-26. Ask Hellriech, Liu or Chang if you want to attend.

-On January 15 ask your friends who didn’t vote Republican how they like their paycheck.

-Only 321 days to the 2013 General.

-This is a special edition. More unifying suggestions in my next report.

-Our prayers are with Senator Inouye’s family.

Gone wrong. “I think religion is what mucks the whole thing up.”

Merry Christmas and a Blessed beginning to 2013 (no offense to those not celebrating Christmas).