If you have seen Darlene Miller’s campaign commercial featuring John Kline then you heard him say that Miller is “the only one I trust to represent us in Congress.”
So, who is “us” ?
Well, John Kline has already defined “us” … “Regardless of your home address and what congressional district you live in, we are all conservatives who love liberty and freedom” … which is probably why John Kline’s Leadership Political Action Committee is named “Freedom and Security PAC”.
Thus, “us” is really the folks that donate to his PAC … the names are probably familiar … you know the ones associated with the For-Profit Education industry (Apollo Education Group, Education Corporation of America) or education loans (Navient Corp is the largest student loan company and the subject of federal inquiries) as well as some familiar businesses like Koch Industries and Lockheed Martin, and even some monies from other Leadership PAC’s … like Paul Ryan’s Prosperity PAC.
The “us” want the next Congress to be staffed with Members that will “represent” them in Congress.
Now, it would be rather crass just for John Kline to ask for a check without providing something in return … like maybe a golfing experience at Kiawah Island Golf Resort in South Carolina.
Yep, it’s been a favorite destination for supporters of Kline’s Freedom and Security PAC ( Mike McFadden and Stewart Mills III campaigns benefited from those events in 2014) … and this year was no difference.
Recently, the PAC paid Kiawah Island Golf Resort $12,162.48 (plus a down payment of $2,500.00) and on the same date, the PAC paid Delta Airlines $3,536.80.
According to a review by OpenSecrets.org, Kline’s PAC has paid Kiawah Island Golf Resort $40,389 over the past two years.
So who do Kline’s golfing party “trust to represent us in Congress” … well, Stewart Mills III has received $15,000 in his quest to defeat Rick Nolan and represent Minnesota’s Eight District … plus Darlene Miller has received $10,000 in her quest to defeat Angie Craig in Minnesota’s Second District … plus Erik Paulsen got a check for $5,000 to help defend his record against Terri Bonoff in Minnesota’s Third District.
John Kline — the “Gregarious Grandpa” — may be telling voters to “trust” Darlene Miller but the money behind the commercial is coming from the Washington Insiders … you know the ones that Donald Trump has been lambasting — the “rigged” political system dominated by special interests.
Trump has urged Americans to approach the elections as jurors, when “the American people will have a chance to issue a verdict”.
The Trump message is pretty simple — Washington DC insiders are bought and paid for by special interests and big corporations.
Abraham Lincoln spoke of America as the land “of the people, by the people and for the people” – with the use of Leadership PACs and “dark money”, America is now the land “of the special interest, by the corporations and for the Washington Insiders”.
The intent of John Kline’s “Trust” commercial is to encourage Second District voters to vote for Darlene Miller in the August 9th primary … a primary that has four candidates — Matt Erickson, John Howe, Jason Lewis and Darlene Miller — competing for the MN-GOP spot on November’s ballot.
For many in the Second District, they had never heard of Darlene Miller … but Washington knows her … from being a “cheerleader” for George Bush’s stimulus program to participating in Peter Roskam’s (R-IL-06) Jobs Forum, she has knows how the system works.
And working the system, she has … from using Small Business Administration programs (SBA 7(a) loan early in her ownership and her 2007 acquisition of the building was made possible through an SBA 504 loan) and advocating for the government-backed Export-Import Bank … Darlene Miller is her own “special interest” with the benefit going to Darlene Miller.
Your mailbox may be telling you that the primary is a choice between the “establishment”-back candidate, Darlene Miller and the Second District MN-GOP endorsed candidate Jason Lewis (Miller had asked to be removed from the ballot before voting began, acknowledging her lack of support among the delegates) … but remember to ask who is paying for that television commercial or mass mailing … it’s not Darlene Miller who has stated her intent not to spend her own money on the campaign, it’s the Washington Insiders who agree with John Kline that Darlene Miller is “the only one I trust to represent us in Congress.”