As first reported on this blog this morning, a Republican activist in Tampa filed an elections complaint against Tallahassee lobbyists Jack and Keyna Cory related to a recent mailer attacking state Senate candidate Tom Lee.
According to the News Service of Florida, the Cory’s lawyer acknowledges the pair “made mistakes,” in the way the mailer was created and put out. The complaint alleges that the lobbyists failed to create a website with proper disclosure information, including who they were and listing expenditure and contribution records, and that as a committee of continuing existence, the group wasn’t allowed to send out “electioneering communications anyway.”
Mark Herron, a lawyer for the Corys acknowledged Friday that they violated the letter of the election law, agreeing for one that CCEs aren’t allowed to publish such messages – and that’s what they did. “They quickly recognized they had made some mistakes with respect to the mail piece,” Herron said, adding they would take corrective actions with any future election efforts.
The mailer drew attention this past week for its attack on Lee on personal issues related to his marriage, though the content of the mailer wasn’t at issue in the complaint, filed by Tampa Republican activist and lawyer Paul Phillips. He also filed a complaint against Lee’s opponent in the Republican primary for Senate District 24, Rep. Rachel Burgin, who, according to the complaint, solicited the money for the mailer. Burgin told the Tampa Bay Times last week that she didn’t direct how the money would be spent, only solicited money from one lobbyist to give to another to help her with her campaign.