Friday, December 16, 2005

Nussle - Fundraising Watch

Cross posted from the No Nussle Blog
I thought it would be interesting to start a series on some of the donors to Nussle’s past political campaigns. The public needs to’s not just votes that determine if you are a constituent…money makes you a constituent. Those with more dollars get their interests represented. Now, I was under the impression that Nussle was running with Iowa’s interests in mind. Yet, there are some major donors to his congressional campaigns that are noticeably absent from living in the state of Iowa.

This week, I thought I’d talk about the Fieldstead Institute. Now, the Fieldstead Institute is a non-profit, charitable organization, that was founded by Howard Ahmanson Jr. to advance his philanthropic causes. He has funded some good things, such as music education programs in the O.C., but he has a tendency to fund causes that are notably on the “right” side of the Christian Fundamentalist wing of the Republican Party. For example [from wikipedia]:

- He funded the magazine Chalcedon Report, which carried an article calling for homosexuals to be stoned
- He is a major funder of the Discovery Institute, whose Center for Science and Culture opposes the theory of evolution and manages a public relations campaign promoting "intelligent design".
- He funds the Claremont Institute, a think-tank which promoted a video in which Charlton Heston praises "the God-fearing Caucasian middle class".

Now, I understand…Nussle has to appeal to his base of voting support. Makes sense politically…but the Fieldstead Institute…where is it based? Irvine, California. That’s right. California. Not western Iowa, not the suburbs of Davenport, not West Des Moines or Council Bluffs. California. Between 2001-2004 the Ahamson’s (Howard & his wife Roberta) have donated $5000 to the Nussle for Congress Committee. This is a lot of scratch for some folks from California to be investing in a congress member from Iowa. Wonder what Mr. Ahmanson has to say about the governor’s race? In 1985, Ahmanson told the Orange County Register, "My goal is the total integration of biblical law into our lives." Now there's an education policy for you. Really, don't you get it? We need new textbooks for the state. Why not purchase a bunch of Calvinist bibles? That's what Ahamson would support. He's what is called a "Calvinist Reconstructionist". He wants a biblical state. That's right - and end to the separation of church & state. What I think Nussle needs to do is take the advice of a number of other Republicans around the country - RETURN THE MONEY. Here's a list of GOP faithful who have initially received funds from Fieldstream, only later to return them:

- Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA)
- Linda Lingle (Hawaii)

One other last bit of information - that might be of interest to the Culver campaign in particular...Seems that Ahmanson has a stake in ES&S one of the large companies that is developing electronic voting systems. In particular, they are responsible for electronic voting systems in Iowa:
The Omaha, Nebraska-based company's computer systems will be responsible for counting 61 million votes this election, nearly half the total ballots cast.1 ES&S also has major contracts to provide paperless electronic voting machines in Ohio, Florida, Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virgnia. The company is privately held, and its owners are uniformly conservative.


Blogger Drew Miller said...

Wow... fantastic research. What a kook.

6:15 PM  

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