Anti-LGBT Group in ‘Ethics’ Clothing Targets Stonewall Dems
Published: October 23, 2013
To be fair, the watchdog group has also gone after Republicans like state House Speaker Joe Straus (R-San Antonio) during the effort to banish him from office and former state Rep. Rob Eissler (R-Woodlands)—it just so happens both men have come under criticism for not legislating conservatively enough.
“It’s quite evident that if there is a legislator or issue that doesn’t fit with them they’ll go after campaign finance reports,” Guajardo said.
So, who or what is the PAC going to tackle next? “Different ethnic groups that want to influence people,” Doyle said.
You get the point.
Overall, it’s difficult to ascertain how many complaints TAEB have filed in total because Texas confidentiality laws prohibit TEC from disclosing who sends the complaints. Tim Sorrells, TEC general counsel says the agency is even barred from acknowledging if a complaint exists—it only becomes publicly available when the commission finds the problem severe enough to warrant a violation.
But Doyle estimates 90 percent of the ones TAEB filed end up in fines or at least, “a slap on the wrist.”
Among the claims, the TEAB specifically alleges the Stonewall Democrats, “did not disclose political contributions and political expenditures,” and did not “include the principal occupation of each person from whom political contributions, that in the aggregate exceeded $50, were accepted during a reporting period.”
Doyle confesses the suspected violations he found “aren’t the most important” infractions one can go after, but that they’re significant enough to elicit TEC’s attention.
Guajardo describes the charges as “nitpicky and baseless.” She points to one allegation that takes the group to task for reversing information regarding occupation and employer—human error tantamount to not crossing a T, she says. Nevertheless, they are willingly complying and have prepared an “extensive” response to the state.
“We as a group are very respectful and mindful of the need to be fully transparent and accountable in our financial reporting,” she said.
Guajardo, the first openly gay city council member in San Antonio, says TEAB’s motive is born from dissatisfaction with the recent progress made in LGBT equality.
“They are not happy and this is one way they show their discontent,” she said.
In the post-NDO fallout, discontented conservative groups like TEAB have managed to shed an even brighter light on their true purpose for opposing the non-discrimination ordinance. If they don’t succeed in shaming politicians and interest groups for supporting causes other than their own, they’ll find other ways to attempt a public shaming, like lobbing ethics complaints from the petty to profound.
One piece of advice Doyle imparted that we’re inclined to agree with: You have to check on political groups and elected officials because sometimes they’re “too ideological.”
No complaints there.
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