For release February 26, 2004Atlanta author and media consultant Phil Kent
today filed a formal ethics complaint against Libertarian Party U.S. Senate candidate George Anderson
, who according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution is "Georgia's self-appointed ethics watchdog." Anderson has filed almost 500 ethics complaints against political candidates since 1996.
Kent's Feb. 25 letter to the Federal Election Commission in Washington cites "more than 25 serious errors and omissions" in Anderson's financial disclosure paperwork that "blatantly violate federal law."
Anderson's own website posts a Dec. 1, 2002 feature story from The Journal-Constitution where Anderson is quoted about his philosophy underlying the filing of his many complaints: "The law is the law. None of this is trivial. I don't feel wrong about holding them (candidates) to the fire." In this context, Kent says, "The numerous violations of federal law in Anderson's disclosure forms are not trivial. This gadfly is now exposed as a blatant hypocrite."
Kent's letter notes that on Jan. 27, 2004 the FEC sent Anderson a letter listing violations of federal law in his initial filings and demanded that Anderson file an amended Form I to provide the required information* In its letter, the FEC stated Anderson failed to designate a treasurer and warned him that "failure to designate a treasurer will result in the inability of the committee to accept contributions and make disbursements." Kent says in spite of this warning, "Anderson's latest filings confirm that he accepted contributions when he did not have a treasurer." The FEC also reprimanded Anderson for "fail(ing) to designate a bank or other depository for committee funds."
According to the FEC's website, Anderson filed an FEC Form 3--"Report of Receipts and Disbursements."
"It's a mess," Kent says, "a sixth grader could have done a better job of filling out the form." Anderson also mailed this form to the wrong address.
Kent, a former president of the Southeastern Legal Foundation, also cites omissions and errors on Anderson's "Detailed Summary Pages of Receipts" form. For example, Kent notes "the candidate failed to fill in the line showing the total number of contributions from individuals, which in this case clearly could not have been zero, because he reports the receipt of at least one contribution." He also failed to fill in the line showing his cash on hand.
"Forms filed late, forms filed in the wrong place, no treasurer listed, no signature on a form, improper boxes checked. George Anderson would file an ethics complaint against any other public official who committed even one of these violations, yet he has himself committed them all," Kent said. "The filing of these badly flawed disclosure reports makes it clear that Anderson has never been truly serious about promoting government ethics, he's only concerned about promoting George Anderson."
Anderson's website address is George Anderson
Copies of the Kent letter to the FEC are available upon request by journalists and any other interested party.To schedule a media interview:
Contact Todd Young (770) 317-2423 or Phil Kent (404) 226-3549