Jon Scott’s Statement on the Special Operations Fund
2006 Republican First-District Congressional Candidate Jon Scott has issued a statement on the recent revelations about Dave Rogers’ Special Operations Fund Political Action Committee. Here is Mr. Scott’s literal bottom line…
I call upon the Special Operations Fund to return donations and to cease further use of Mr. Rogers’ name in their efforts. It appears that what they have done is not illegal but, given the large number of elderly donors and the small percentage of disbursements to candidates, it is certainly immoral. I have always had the utmost respect for Dave Rogers and support him in any efforts to make this right, but it must be made right.The complete statement is available in the extended entry.
2006 RI First District Congressional Candidate Jonathan Scott, who ran against Patrick Kennedy as the Republican nominee in the last election cycle, has issued the following statement on the “Special Operations fund”, Dave Rogers, and Christian Winthrop.
“Because I have been fielding questions from the public about my predecessor and the recent story by Mark Arsenault in the Sunday Journal which revealed questionable practices at the Special Operations Fund, I thought that it would be appropriate to issue a formal statement.
As the Republican Party’s choice to challenge Patrick Kennedy in 2006, I was disappointed to learn that solicitations had been made on Mr. Rogers’ behalf though his Political Action Committee, implying that he was in fact still a candidate for the First District seat. The perception that Rogers was still in the race and that he had plans moving forward to 2008 may have been a factor in our nationwide fundraising struggles. Mr. Rogers was a strong candidate with a storied background and wide name recognition throughout the country. If he furthered the perception that he was still in the race, I have no doubt that it had an impact on those who might have donated to our campaign otherwise.
We had very little interaction with the Rogers 2004 team during the 2006 cycle. I met with both the candidate and Mr. Winthrop as it was my custom to speak with each of my predecessors, including Kevin Vigilante, who ran the closest of any Republican to Representative Kennedy.
Mr. Winthrop never worked for our campaign and was never offered a position with our campaign. This includes the timeframe after he severed ties with the Spencer campaign in New York.
I am concerned by the situation at the Special Operations Fund and believe that the story is symbolic of why working folks are turned off by the political process and why we need serious campaign finance reform. I am quite certain that Mr. Winthrop and his partner in Florida were not the first to segue from a serious and well-run Congressional campaign into a questionable Political Action Committee. I do not believe that one Party has a monopoly on the methodology. It is regrettable that the general public will shy away from political involvement because of a perception that special interests and insiders control the process. In a world of 100-million-dollar Presidential campaigns, our neighbors feel disconnected from their government.
I had plans to start a PAC with the expressed purpose of recruiting and supporting working class Rhode Islanders for Republican General Assembly and City/Town Council seats. I hope that the allegations against the Special Operations Fund do not impede those efforts, as I believe that the political process must be made available to everyone, regardless of their occupation or financial status.
Finally, I call upon the Special Operations Fund to return donations and to cease further use of Mr. Rogers’ name in their efforts. It appears that what they have done is not illegal but, given the large number of elderly donors and the small percentage of disbursements to candidates, it is certainly immoral. I have always had the utmost respect for Dave Rogers and support him in any efforts to make this right, but it must be made right.