Campaign finance complaint filed against state Sen. Dave Thompson
The DFL Party filed a campaign finance complaint Monday against state Sen. Dave Thompson, R-Lakeville, questioning Thompson's work for the Republican Party of Minnesota while he was a candidate for the state Senate, according to multiple media reports.
"It raises questions as to whether the folks are being paid to run for office,'' DFL state chairman Ken Martin in announcing the complaint was quoted by the Star Tribune.
The dispute concerns a report from Minnesota Public Radio last week that Thompson, a lawyer and former radio host who was first elected to the Senate in November 2010, was paid $70,000 by the Republican Party of Minnesota for communications consulting (Chairman's spending decisions on insiders helped lead to GOP debt.) According to MPR, Thompson was doing work for the party when he ran for the Senate in 2010.
“The people of Minnesota, Senator Thompson's constituents, and his colleagues in St. Paul deserve to know the truth about this highly bizarre relationship between him and the Minnesota Republican Party,” according to a news release from the DFL Party quoting Martin. “Why did the Republican Party of Minnesota fail to disclose this financial arrangement in their campaign finance report? And why did Senator Thompson not disclose this arrangement on his economic disclosure form?”
Martin said Thompson should have fully disclosed the relationship in the statement of economic interest all elected officials must file with the state's Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board. In addition, Martin said, Thompson should clarify what work he did for the party, to make it clear the party was not paying him to be a candidate.
To do away with those concerns, he said, the DFL Party has a policy against paying candidates or elected officials for services.
Thompson's office said the senator is studying the complaint before issuing a response, and the Republican Party was also looking for specifics on the complaint before responding.