The memo reporting offer of FBI help to investigate governor’s campaign finances

Click here to read the June 15 email in which Stacy Kalberman, executive secretary of the State Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission, reports to the commission that the FBI has offered the use of one of its forensic accountant to assist in an investigation into Gov. Nathan Deal’s campaign finances.

If you are a member of the media pulling down a copy, all we ask is that you credit The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Kalberman resigned this morning – although she declared she was pushed. Click here for the latest from my AJC colleague Aaron Gould Sheinin.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

97 comments Add your comment

Jack

June 17th, 2011
3:07 pm

More of the same corruption and funny money accounting from the holier-than-thou crowd on the Right. Hope it’s not true but habits are hard to break. We got a Bad Deal.

Bart Graham

June 17th, 2011
3:10 pm

Our state cannot afford to appropriate taxpayer money for witch hunts. We have to provide essential services only as we work with a limited budget. On another note, state revenues are way up since I left office.

professional skeptic

June 17th, 2011
3:16 pm

The FBI needs to flat-out take over the investigation, ASAP.

Anyone within GA government who dares participate in an investigation of Nathan Deal gets bullied out of his/her job.

Another Voice

June 17th, 2011
3:18 pm

GOVERNOR- What part of Illegal don’t you understand!!!!

Gov. Nathan (don't call me Shady) Deal

June 17th, 2011
3:19 pm

We need to focus on the future of this great state and stop looking back. My planned War on Poverty (my own) must proceed with all due haste.

Thanks to all the goobers that voted for me. Things was looking grim.

professional skeptic

June 17th, 2011
3:21 pm

@ “Bart Graham” State revenues will most assuredly drop, when Governor Deal’s cronies get around to dismantling the policies put in place by former Revenue Commissioner Bart Graham… Such as: hiring additional revenue investigators, relentlessly pursuing tax cheats, etc.

(Those initiatives aren’t exactly considered “business friendly” among Deal’s crowd, if you know what I mean.)

Desperate Woman

June 17th, 2011
3:23 pm

Sounds like rantings of a desparate woman. Don’t cut my pay let’s fire a person in Education (because we don’t need no education on ethics). Keep in mind just because she said the FBI offered doesn’t mean the FBI offered. FBI generally doesn’t offer anything. If there was enough there they would take over the investigation. But of course theories sell papers better than facts.

Centrist

June 17th, 2011
3:32 pm

Wow – the FBI offered forensic accountant to assist in yet FURTHER investigation into Gov. Nathan Deal’s campaign finances to see if there was some sort of minor violation. The Ethics Commission Chairman told his politically motivated Executive Secretary that he didn’t want to waste any more resources on this when funding was scarce. He went a little further and said there were needed spending cuts since his budget was being trimmed along with most other Georgia government budgets due to economics as described here:

Ethics commission Chairman Patrick Millsaps told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he wants to slash the executive secretary’s salary from $120,000 to $85,000 a year and eliminate the agency’s $86,000 a year No. 2 staff position, perhaps replacing it with a staff attorney at a lower salary.

Millsaps said when he began to study the budget he realized that the salaries of the executive secretary and her deputy, Sherilyn Streicker made up 22 percent of the agency’s total budget and should be reined in.

“This about saving money,” Millsaps said. “This is not about any one person.”

Millsaps said when he and fellow commissioner Hillary Stringfellow met with Kalberman late last week to discuss the proposed pay cut Kalberman said she would not work for the reduced amount and left the room. Millsaps said he took that to mean she had resigned. Only today did she “officially” resign rather than work for less pay. She quit because $85K wasn’t good enough, and her witch hunt had come to an end.

Pure politics here, but the Deal opponents and hence the AJC is hyping it up in order to continue to attack Deal long after the election is over.

GaBlue

June 17th, 2011
3:37 pm

Well, it wouldn’t be a witch hunt and it wouldn’t be expensive if the Governor just cheerfully handed over the requested information. I’m sure he has nothing to HIDE, right? After all, despite being under investigation for ethics violations in Congress (time to skedaddle back home to the friendlies!) Nathan Deal assured us he was a good guy who cared about doing the right thing. Right?

People who have nothing to hide do not have their appointees put the boot heel on the throat of the public servants whose JOB it is to ensure the ethical behavior of those who spend our tax money — on behalf of the taxpayers of this good state. I’m sure this is all a big misunderstanding, and Gov. Deal will apologize any minute, and provide open access to everything. Stay tuned, believers!

Road Scholar

June 17th, 2011
3:45 pm

I guess we didn’t have the money when Richardson had the affair in office and the rest of the consevatives hid ? Witchhunt? I think not! I guess for a conservative everything is a witchhunt unless it involves President Obama!

Broke

June 17th, 2011
3:50 pm

No wonder why the AJC is going broke. It appears only liberal dems like to read and comment on this kind of poor reporting.

Last Man Standing

June 17th, 2011
3:51 pm

My day would never be complete without reading something negative about a Republican printed in the AJC. Thanks, Jim . . .

Centrist

June 17th, 2011
3:54 pm

It’s not like there have been many, many investigations into Deal’s (and to to be fair, Barnes’ among others) campaign contribution violations for over a year. All sorts of scrutiny and no major violations found – just minor paper work type stuff – maybe some donations returned. At some point it has to be wrapped up. There are going to be more claims by both sides as we move on into the elections of 2012.

professional skeptic

June 17th, 2011
3:55 pm

Centrist
June 17th, 2011
3:32 pm

When the Governor’s subordinates bully and strong-arm an ethics investigator for investigating the Governor’s ethics (business dealings campaign misdeeds, etc.) I’d say that’s fairly newsworthy, and therefore warrants coverage by the AJC and other media.

Do you disagree?

Sadie Fields

June 17th, 2011
3:59 pm

@centrist– what is the flavor of your kool-aid? I want some. This is a legitimate investigation and just because voters got him in office doesn’t mean he can’t be impeached! Dealgate will not go away if the governor continues to conduct illegal acts.

Last Man Standing

June 17th, 2011
4:06 pm

Centrist:

I believe you to be correct on this issue. Also, it is very, very rare that the FBI “offers” any service: they normally have to be requested to assist in an investigation.

Centrist

June 17th, 2011
4:09 pm

Only partisan CLAIMS of bully and illegal conduct. All investigated, and all dismissed.

The Executive Secretary of the state ethics commission agreed to formally resign this morning, avoiding a showdown with her bosses. She had this to say: “I have the greatest respect for the commission and the work that it does,” Kalberman said in the meeting. “I am happy and look forward to working with the commission moving forward into a transition of my position and also helping the commission and continuing its work which is in the public interest.”

It is the AJC, Common Cause, some posters here, and other Deal opponents who are attempting to make a mountain out of this anthill, and won’t move on.

shelley wynter

June 17th, 2011
4:15 pm

my question is where are my Tea party-limited govt, don’t waste my tax dollars crowd? I support the tea party but if you are going to turn a blind eye to corruption and fraud when your team is in office then you are worse then they are for you have no principals and at least they are lining their pockets while you keep them in office and get nothing, nada, zilch

khc

June 17th, 2011
4:19 pm

what dunderheads we have here; what do you think an ethics commission is supposed to do

Oakhurstdawg

June 17th, 2011
4:21 pm

@Centrist,

Unless I’m mistaken, the AJC is in business to do two things. Cover state and local events, including politics, and attempt to get as many people to read their paper as possible. Often times getting eyes on the page involves covering scandals and investiations that may or may not bear fruit.

If the Governor, who has a track record of questionable business dealings (wasn’t he under investigation by Congress when he left?) is under investigation by the state Ethics commission, and the staffer who is the principal on the investigation leaves under questionable circumstances, then I’d say that’s newsworthy. At a minimum, it requires some looking into.

Anywho, the AJC is just trying to run a business. And as a citizen of the state of Georgia, I’m interested in seeing how this plays out.

Thks Jim.

professional skeptic

June 17th, 2011
4:23 pm

“I have the greatest respect for the commission and the work that it does,” Kalberman said in the meeting. “I am happy and look forward to working with the commission moving forward into a transition of my position and also helping the commission and continuing its work which is in the public interest.”

What else would you expect someone to say, who’s been strong-armed behind closed doors and then “agreed to resign” from her position?

She was made an example of. Anyone in GA government who wants to keep his/her job better not dare cross ol’ brother Deal or participate in any sort of investigation into his past misconduct– unless they want to go the way of Bart Graham and Stacy Kalberman.

[...] Jim Galloway shares with us today a memo from Stacey Kalberman, exiting Executive Director of the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission, to the members of that Commission. [...]

Ramguy

June 17th, 2011
4:34 pm

Gee it isn’t fair to investigate a Repub…so say the ones wearing the tin foil hats.

Centrist

June 17th, 2011
4:40 pm

This is going nowhere. Partisans being partisan is nothing new.

I’ll be screaming with the partisans if Deal attempts to impose his religion on voters, reverse Roe v. Wade which he opposes, or improperly block stem cell research. But, so far, I have to agree with most of the POLICIES he is implementing. The more partisan of those who don’t agree with his tax, spending, immigration stances merely use any and all unfounded accusations to attack. The AJC is a leader in such partisan attacks. Selective reporting is one thing, harping after resolution is yet another.

cary

June 17th, 2011
4:42 pm

Deal is a crook, but we don’t seem to care. We’d elect a mass murderer if he ran as a Republican. Other shady characters in public office include Casey Cagle, Chip Rogers, Tom Graves, and the list could go on and on.

freddy

June 17th, 2011
4:55 pm

I figured out what the R behind a politician means….. Rotten.

GaBlue

June 17th, 2011
5:08 pm

Perhaps y’all feel like they should only investigate the nine remaining Democrats in the state of Georgia, none of whom have no power at all. Perhaps that would improve your online newspaper-reading experience and give you warm fuzzy feelings. After all, anyone who puts an “R” beside his or her name has already been cleared of any wrong doing or ill intent by the simple act of being “R.” That’s what the little letter beside the name is FOR, people! Nor further information will ever be required. Transparency is for SUCKERS! Right?

CobbGOPer

June 17th, 2011
5:17 pm

One-party rule is a problem. It was a problem when it was Democrats ruling the state; it’s a problem now that Republicans rule the state. Reform our ballot-access laws and make it easier to run as a third party. And impose legislative term limits.

Bob

June 17th, 2011
5:20 pm

How many more reasons do you need for outsourcing our state gov’t? Based on the performances of our past three governors, a trained monkey could do this job effectively and efficiently.

GaBlue

June 17th, 2011
5:25 pm

CobbGOPer,

I totally agree! That many of the corrupt, overbearing good ol boys labeled Repubs in charge now used to be the same corrupt, overbearing good ol boys labeled Dems is another indicator that we need some real change here, not just a different flavor of scapegoat.

The people of this state are complicit with their apathy. Blind acceptance of a party does NOT equal holding officials accountable for their behavior. This form of laziness is as bad or worse than laziness in its other forms. It’s a citizen’s DUTY to pay attention and ask questions, buncha lazy slackers!

Angry Voter

June 17th, 2011
5:33 pm

cary – yes, we voted Deal into office, knowing he was crooked. We had no choice. The Dems failed to nominate a credible candidate. We couldn’t go back to the incompetence of Barnes. The Dems chose to nominate him, despite his previous failure, his losing a statewide election and the hypocrisy of the “vote for me because of have experience but ignore my experience” mantra.

If the Dems had nominated Porter, Deal would have lost. Had the Reps nominated Ox and the Dem’s nominated anyone but Barnes, the Dems would have won. Reps didn’t nominate their unelectable candidate. They were smart. Dems did nominate their unelectable candidate. They were arrogant. Arrogance loses to smart every time.

Last Man Standing

June 17th, 2011
5:37 pm

I’d be willing to bet that Galloway and the AJC will never run this and related stories:

“An auditor for the Federal Election Commission is attempting to have his bosses seek a formal investigation into the collection by the Obama for President campaign of more than $200 million in potentially illegal political donations, including millions of dollars of illegal, foreign donations,”

GaBlue

June 17th, 2011
5:39 pm

Angry Voter,

Please come to the JJ dinner next weekend and explain this!!! The Georgia Democratic Party keep doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. What’s a SANE person to do?

Angry Voter

June 17th, 2011
5:39 pm

Those who think Barnes was a credible candidate fail to see the difference between arrogance in their opinion and respect for the opinion of others. Everyone knew the majority of Georgians thought Barnes was incompetent, but the Dems thought they could somehow convince the public to believe their own lying eyes. The Dems need to get over themselves and nominate someone who is electable, which requires understanding others’ opinions and compromise, rather than someone they like but the public will never except.

Angry Voter

June 17th, 2011
5:42 pm

GaBlue – in the best of all words, the Dems and Reps would be fired and the people would assert their independence and vote for rational individuals. If Ford and GM conspired to keep Toyota and Honda out, there would be lawsuits, but the Dems and Reps are allowed to make laws that guaranty they will be the only two parties on the ballot and their appointed judges allow it.

phil

June 17th, 2011
5:42 pm

Last Man- Come home and cut the grass. That illegal immigrant you hired didn’t show up.

professional skeptic

June 17th, 2011
5:45 pm

Agree 100% with Cobb GOPer @ 5:17 and GaBlue. Also I would like to believe Angry Voter @ 5:33, because I voted for Porter, and I pray she runs again.

GaBlue

June 17th, 2011
5:50 pm

Angry Voter,

You make an excellent point about the lack of real competition. I won’t disagree. However, in order to actually get someone elected to a major office, we still have to work within the system we have. Toward that end, the Ga Dems continue to fail because they don’t do what needs to be done: get behind someone fresh, real, and competent, and pull out all the stops to support that person’s campaign (to the exclusion of those who believe it’s their “turn.”) The last two best state-level candidates I’ve seen (and met) were smart, competent women who really did care more about doing a good job than feathering their own nests. But they were torn down by members of both parties, and the result is we have the same old same old self-serving stinkage “leading” our state.

As for building third-party or independent options: take the small seats first, and stand up to the bullies. It won’t be easy.

Last Man Standing

June 17th, 2011
6:01 pm

phil:

“That illegal immigrant you hired didn’t show up.”

I’ll just wait on him. He’s gone to Atlanta to buy a forged birth certificate (he was born in Hawaii), a forged Socal Security card and a forged drivers license. While he’s there, he is applying for food stamps, unemployment and social security disability.

Amazing

June 17th, 2011
6:02 pm

My day would not be complete without reading something or hearing something negative about Democrats on Fox media outlets!

GaBlue

June 17th, 2011
6:08 pm

Last Man Standing,

Dang, that’s funny stuff! What time does your gig at the Punchline start tonight? Dude, you can’t just be giving these gems away for FREE! Please let us stand in line and pay to hear them. We insist!

khc

June 17th, 2011
6:12 pm

angry voter…you think repubs like sonny and nathan are more competent than roy, whoa…..you probably think w did not have a major part in the degradation of our economy either…..change your moniker to incompetent angry voter

The Centrist

June 17th, 2011
6:23 pm

History has proven that the vast majority of Georgia politicians have alway been what we now call social conservatives. That means low on ethics and high on rhetoric. I doubt that Georgia’s have ever elected a Govenor that has not met this definition.

Jill

June 17th, 2011
6:24 pm

Someone needs to look into why Atlanta Prinicipals are taking Vacations (calling them conferences) on title one money.

Alabama Communist

June 17th, 2011
6:40 pm

More Breaking News On FBI Deal………A deep source within the FBI said today the FBI had already wire tap the Governor Office and bug the Governor Limo without a legal warrent since they don’t need them anymore.. He also said that the former Congressman had voted for the Patriot Act 2 times before and would be given consideration if and when his Treason Trail should be needed in the future if he get out of line like Congressman Weener..

Dave

June 17th, 2011
6:45 pm

CPAs, Accountants, Internal Auditors and State Ethic Boards pay for themselves, by acting as deterrents to embezzlement, theft, conflicts of interest and corruption. Every time you hear an official (elected or otherwise) trying to eliminate these positions, your radar should set warning signals off. WE get the government we deserve. Call the Governor Monday, better yet fax him messages, on the hour every hour, until he understands how great the warning message is.

Charles Thomas

June 17th, 2011
6:47 pm

I would fire any one who wrote such an arrogant, disrespectful, insubordinate email, whether that person is conservative, liberal, Repubican, Democrat, male, female, straight, gay, transgendered or whatever. Do you think the intended audience for this was the named recipients? It was for a much broader audience that people like Galloway can be counted on to try to reach. Jim, I promise to give you credit if I download this. No one really gives a crap and I’m alredy regretting the five minutes of my life spent on this Also, the AJC should and probably does know that the FBI doesn’t operate in the fashion refected in the email. Why not ask your truth meter guys to check on this one?

Daiwe01

June 17th, 2011
7:06 pm

Yeah, Slick Deal is at it again!
He bugs out of the U.S. Congress to avoid an ethics investigation he can’t stop. Now he starts dismantling the ethics group he _can_ stop.
Close the doors & turn out the lights — no integrity in Georgia’s government.

khc

June 17th, 2011
7:10 pm

CT, if you were being railroaded you might be a little po’d too

brad

June 17th, 2011
7:13 pm

Well then, Charles, next time please spare us your 5 minutes of righteous indignation.