2010 Elections Again: Ron George Responds to Judd Legum's Claims ~ Annapolis Capital Punishment

Monday, August 9, 2010

2010 Elections Again: Ron George Responds to Judd Legum's Claims

Candidate Judd Legum, a close associate of Mayor Josh Cohen who hopes to represent District 30 in the Maryland House has spent much of his energy trying to put incumbent Republican Delegate Ron George on the defensive so he can put him out of his job later. Legum is likely to be one of three on the D slate joining incumbent House Speaker Mike Busch and Virginia Claggett. George is likely to be joined by two other Republicans, Herb McMillan and Seth Howard.  And Legum has been campaigning hard, raising a lot of money and pounding the pavement....and raising a lot of money.

Recently he sent out a fundraising request and made a number of claims about George. For example, he wrote that,  "Four years ago, the Republican incumbent reached into his own deep pocket and dumped $80,000 into the race to win by 53 votes. The first campaign finance deadline since January is just one week away. It will set the tone for the final stretch of this race. I need to raise $5000 in the next seven days to maintain our momentum and put us on a path to victory. Can you pitch in $20 right now?"

So I repeatedly asked Legum to substantiate such charges. He did not. I would have thought that Legum, a lawyer and master in online and opposition research who ran Hillary Clinton's research department when she ran against Obama, would have easily been able to prove these claims to me. Therefore, I went right to the target himself, who gladly provided a response. Below, readers can see what Ron George has to say:

Ron George's response:

There is a fundraising note going out from the Legum campaign that makes claims and I want to set the record straight. I do not have "deep pockets", nor did I spend $80,000 of my own money. I started my campaign in 2006 by paying for some mailings and start-up costs myself instead of doing a start-up "loan" like other candidates do. Then as the campaign went on, my wife Becky and I made loans from our IRA and savings but never paid it back to ourselves. By the end of the 2 year campaign, we spent $40,000 of our own money which we had saved up for over a number of years. In addition, we raised another $122,000 almost entirely from people within the district. We were supposed to pay ourselves back what we loaned, but were so committed to the race that we did not. It left us broke but we were determined to invest in Maryland as our children wished to stay here and we were concerned for the environment, economic opportunity, and safety. Our deep love for Maryland drove us to be involved in a greater way.
The note from Legum attempts to play class warfare by claiming I have "deep pockets" and that I "dumped $80,000 into the race to win by 53 votes." Not true. The amount he claims rises each time he tells this story. He has used such language in the past saying his opponent is "independently wealthy", "entrenched", "sells diamonds" (that one is true but what is his point?). Becky and I work hard and scrimp and save just like everyone else. Michael Busch had $750,000 in his campaign account in the Spring of 2006. I had $50,000. Mr Legum has raised most of his money this cycle from interests outside the state and is doing very well. My donations are almost entirely from the hard working citizens of Anne Arundel County, mostly District 30. I feel that is how it should be.
One other thing to set straight: Legum is doing a push poll that asks, "Did you know that he tried to use his [authority/prestige/power] to teach creationism in school curriculum?"

This is also false. When candidates were asked at a candidates forum if we were for teaching creationism in public school science classes, I said loudly "NO", as did the the other 5 Republicans and the 5 Democrats. The Independent Constitution Party candidate was the only one to say yes. I have many witnesses. The Capital Newspaper (not present at the forum) mistakenly wrote that I said yes. By the time we corrected the Capital, the Baltimore Sun had picked it up. When I told the Sun the mistake, they never corrected it. Perhaps Legum did not realize this mistake. Perhaps he does not care and wishes to score political points. His "poll" has gone on for weeks. I do not support the teaching of creationism or intelligent design in public schools. And according to the Maryland Constitution, thankfully, the General Assembly cannot legislate any curriculum.

Thanks for the chance to set the record straight.


Ron George
The big difference, among many differences between Legum and George is that George has both a voting record and one as a business owner in the area. Legum's record and background, although he is a local native, is less clear and less readily available. While he has been campaigning vigorously and knocking on doors, I'd much rather see him explaining who he is and what he intends to do as a delegate rather than attacking his likely Republican general opponent. Another big difference is that George came forward to explain his side of the story while we are still waiting for legum to provide some real data instead of telling me to dig it up.
Ohhh....it's going to be interesting to go through those finance reports which will be available soo!  Stay tuned. And Mr. Legum is of course invited to respond to the above. Perhaps this time he'll actually show how George dipped into his deep pockets to eke out a victory. And maybe,  just maybe he'll respond to George's claim about the candidate who really may have the deepest pockets of all. ACP will be pleased to publish his reply.
Look here for frequent updates to all the 2010 election campaigns with 2010 Elections Again! LISTEN TO CP Publisher Paul Foer on 1430WNAV at 8:15 every weekday morning or click on the WNAV icon to the right, press On demand and On The Foerfront to listen. READ CP Publisher Paul Foer's "The Ninth Ward" every Wednesday in The Capital at www.capitalonline.com Identified comments are always welcome. ALL ANONYMOUS COMMENTS will be automatically rejected without being opened.


Adam Pagnucco said...

Neither candidate is correct.

As of January 2010, Ron George's campaign account received four contributions from Ron George Jewelers totaling $4,985. He has also made fourteen contributions to himself totaling $47,675.65. The combined total of the eighteen contributions is $52,660.65. That accounts for 20% of the $261,035.03 he has raised since 2005.

Here's another tidbit. Just $9,975, or 4%, of Ron George's money has come from out of state. In my county (Montgomery), the average out-of-state percentage for all candidates is about 20%.

Paul Foer said...

Adam Thanks! I wish that Judd Legum would have responded and provided details. He seems a bit obsessed with Delegate George. How much of Legum's donations come from out of state? Or out of the district? I appreciate your efforts!

blogger templates | Make Money Online