Streams

Campaign Finance and WFP

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Edward-Isaac Dovere, editor of City Hall, a monthly publication focused on New York politics and policy, talks about his investigative report on the finances of the Working Families Party, followed by Kevin Finnegan, political director for 1199 SEIU and former general counsel of the Working Families Party, responding to the City Hall News report.

Guests:

Edward-Isaac Dovere and Kevin Finnegan

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Comments [16]

JC from Queens

This is the tip of the iceberg. When all is looked into you will see other thing that are questionable. You will see links not only with companies like DFS, Berlin Rosen, and Red Horse Strategies, you will see connections with Acorn and the Advance Group.

You have to look at the fundraisers done by WFP. Tickets for the WFP are extremely high. If you want endorsements you have to pay the price. If not one way then another way.

Aug. 12 2009 12:58 PM
bklynlifer from bklyn

I waded my way through Mr. Dovere's incoherent 10,000 word article. He kept uncovering things he didn't understand, saying, "AhA!! Lookee here! This must be evidence of evil-doing" when it is normal, efficient perfectly legal business practice.

DFS is a business set up to provide data and field services to candidates. The candidate pays DFS a fee and DFS provides the services. Really very simple. DFS hires whoever it needs to do that job, and makes sure to pay the going rate for those swervices.

The real problem here is that Mr. Dovere is totallly ignorant of the laws he thinks may have been broken and enamored of the power of a blog to get people to pay attention to you, even when you don't know what you're talking about.

Thank goodness there IS a WFP to help progressive candidates like Danny Dromm and Jummane Williams overcome their incumbent opponents. Otherwise, they wouldn't stand a chance.

Aug. 12 2009 12:46 PM
m from m

A non-profit cannot "earn a profit", even if it has a profit-making entity. Any surplus funds of a non-profit are put into the bank account of the non-profit and used for programs. Basic non-profit administration- it would have been worth it for EI Dovere to talk to someone who is familiar with the law and with non-profit administration.

Aug. 12 2009 07:37 AM
Mitch from Manhattan

As a WFP supporter I was interested in what Dovere had to say. His argument didn't impress me much. But it says something about WFP that they've become big enough for someone to pay attention and pick on them. It's good to have scrutiny because power corrupts. I've generally agreed with the positions WFP has taken to date. But as they get more powerful, let's see if they can stick to the straight and narrow. Or will they just join the ranks of the other political power brokers?

Aug. 11 2009 11:11 PM
hjs from 11211

jim
petty.
what do u believe in. who are u. keep the mud out of elections.

Aug. 11 2009 12:54 PM
jim fouratt from greenwich village

RE: Lee

so typical of a Quinn supporter .. do a personal attack when someone raises am ethical issue in this race. My post was about the endorsement process of the Working Families Party and their endorsement of a fake progressive (Quinn) who is under Federal criminal investigation for mail amd wire fraud in the use of a multi-million dollar slush fund. She has never stood up for the residents of District 3 when her buddy Mike wanted things like placing the main garbage garage right next to a new childrens park in the Hudson Trust ..even when Glick, Brewer, Godfrey and Gerson came up with alternative locations which would not be as disruptive to the West village and its small streets and a potential toxic site for small children, Quinn supported the Mayor over her constituents... an artist and an educator you identify yourself ..well you are certainly entitled to your opinion ... but you are the first "artist" i have heard who supports Quinn.. unless they are connected to a non-profit that funding depends on the Mayor and his slush fund princess.

jim fouratt

You do know that neither Rosie Mendez or Deborah Glick has endorsed Quinn .. why do you think she can't get their support?

Aug. 11 2009 12:40 PM
Born in Queens from Elmhurst

With the right-wing hijacking the conversation about health care in the name of freedom of speech, why focus on a relatively small organization that seems to be truly grassroots? The mistakes they made were because they're not sophisticated enough to cover their tracks like the big boys. Oh, and who pays Mr.Dovere?

Aug. 11 2009 10:41 AM
lee from Brooklyn

@ Jim Fouratt,

I am a voter registered WFP member (I am an artist and educator who is has never been in WFP's employ) who is not mad at the decision to make an allaiance with Quinn or to act in politically expedient ways. that is purpose of political parties. Your whininess in this forum does not instill confidence in me that you, highly progressive though you may be, would be an effective representative of the people in your district.

Aug. 11 2009 10:41 AM
jim fouratt from greenwich village

Finally the WFP is being shown to operate like the old time political machine it seeks to replace .. It is no secret that candidate endorsements after an endorsement panel interview is ultimate made by a few men in a back room. Now it appears that one of the criteria used by those backroom guys is the ability of the candidate to "buy" the WFP services.. now a have a bit of understanding how WFP endorses the faux progressive Quinn and not either of the the two true progressives in the race for District 3 council seat .. both Yetta Kurland and I were interviewed. I felt very positive about my exchange with the Manhattan panel ... and Yetta told me she too felt hopeful about the endorsement. One elected official had warned me that WFP would endorse Quinn because they wanted to be seen as supporting "winners" which would increase their power position.

Good name .. same old politics with their hand out.

jim fouratt
candidate for City Council District 3

Aug. 11 2009 10:33 AM
queens native from Elmhurst

With the stuff going on with the right wing hijacking the discussion of public health care in the name of the first amendment, why are you focusing on one of the more truly grassroots and relatively small organizations? Who funds Mr. Dovere?

Aug. 11 2009 10:33 AM
jim fouratt from greenwich village

Finally teh WFP is being shown to operate like the old time political machine it seeks to repalce .. It is no secret that candidate endorsements after an endorsement panel interview is ultimate made by a few men in a back room. Now it appears that one of the criteria used by those backroom guys is the ability of the candidate to "buy" the WFP services.. now a have a bit of understanding how WFP endorses the faux progressive Quinn and not either of the the two true progressives in the race for District 3 council seat .. both Yetta Kurland and I were interviewed. I felt very positive about my exchange with the Manhattan panel ... and Yetta told me she too felt hopeful about the endorsement. One elected official had warned me that WFP would endorse Quinn because they wanted to be seen as supporting "winners" which would increase their power position.

Good name .. same old politics with their hand out.

jim fouratt
candidate for City Council District 3

Aug. 11 2009 10:31 AM
lee from Brooklyn

Hmmmm...
I was with your guest until he got to his conclusions which were frankly, loopy. While there may be a need for tighter record keeping and clearer fiscal separation the leap to the WFP "trying to make a profit" is at least a red herring. NOT EVEN THE WRITER, is suggesting that any individual is making big bucks (even if the two pay ranges are combined- we are talking salaries in the 60-70k a year range) and no one is speaking about dividends being paid to investors. We are talking about something that to me sounds akin to a museum opening a gift shop or cafe which generates income to further the mission of the non-profit. It may be an end run around the completely skewing effects Bloomberg's refusal to participate in public campaign financing but I don't see graft.

Aug. 11 2009 10:27 AM
sue from NYC

I have not read the article, but if we're investigating WFP, let's investigate a lot of other non-profits that filter profits from a profit-making arm. Sesame Workshop, for example. Or look up Larrys Balloons (larrys.org) through search...This is an inherent problem for a lot of non-profits.

Aug. 11 2009 10:20 AM
hjs from 11211

picking on the little guy?!!?
can't this guy go find a hedge fund manager to burn at the stake?

Aug. 11 2009 10:17 AM
HipHopSays from Brooklyn (DUMBO)

(boo!) smells like election year politics....WP endorses Thompson for top dog slot and Mayor Bloomie can't muster decent press (and keeps tweeting me about astoria local paper endorsements and mailing me mailers with sotomoyer on the front).

Aug. 11 2009 10:04 AM
Martin Chuzzlewit from manhattan

Oh, my goodness!!
Someone is actually going to ask for transparency among one of our "progressive" lobbying front groups???
YIKES!!!

Aug. 11 2009 10:02 AM

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