Friday, January 08, 2010

Republicans for Choice PAC = Money for Ann Stone

The Center for Public Integrity has a report on the Republicans for Choice PAC and it's not pretty.
In recent years, most of the PAC’s payments have gone to one of three recipients: Capstone Lists (a direct-marketing company owned by Stone), The Stone Group (a political consulting firm owned by Stone), and Ann Stone directly.

Dating back to the beginning of 2005, about 69 percent of the $967,108 spent by the group has gone to those three entities. Both companies and the PAC, along with the not-yet-built National Women’s History Museum (Stone is senior vice president), share space in an Alexandria office building. Though the four entities list different suite numbers on correspondence, filings, and the building’s occupant directory, the four Stone groups share a second-floor office with a door marked “250-260.”

Republicans for Choice pays thousands of dollars each year for office, equipment, and list rental to Capstone Lists. The Stone Group’s services are retained for the PAC’s accounting, mailing production, and website updates (though contains numerous out-of-date and under construction pages).

Stone herself received nearly $250,000 since the start of 2001 as reimbursements for her “travel and entertainment,” “automobile maintenance repairs,” phone, tires, gasoline, and various other expenses.

HT: RH Reality Check blog


  1. Anonymous2:30 PM

    Your statement that Republicans for Choice = Money for Ann Stone is so wrong it is beyond belief, did you read the article? Do you understand FEC law? By the way I am that Ann Stone.

    While you and I disagree on the issue of abortion I have always tried to be fair with my pro life friends and I hope you will do the same.

    Let me start off though by telling you that most of the "facts" in the original article are correct. Most but not all. But that is not enough to know the real story.

    The real problem however is in the conclusions and in the omissions of information by the author of the original article.

    They may say the omissions were to limit the length of the article but those omissions change the tone and perception of the "facts" they reported and some of their conclusions.

    First off, I made the original reporter well aware that our PAC was never primarily designed to support candidates by giving money. In fact I was clear with him that was a small part of what we were set up to do.

    And I explained that unlike the other groups he had compared us to we did all our work under a PAC which meant that all of our activity was disclosed and is public.

    The other groups listed who are great and do great work have separate 527's or c3s or c4s to do most of their work which is not candidate related. Organizing a group's overall work that way allows them to split up expenses and overhead.

    And they are not required by law to make any public disclosure of specific receipts and expenses like we do in a PAC. So much of their administrative and project costs are separated from their PAC so their percentages of course would look better.

    I guess I would now say we should have done it the same way so that all the money contributed into the PAC was only raised for candidates and spent that way,but that is not how we did it. We neither raised money soley for candidates nor spent it that way, creating this PR nightmare.

  2. Anonymous2:33 PM

    Here is another example of a conclusion that was distorted. What the authors did not tell you is that the reason my firms were paid was two fold:

    1) When I started RFC no GOP firm would help us fundraise or organize for fear of retribution by the GOP. In fact there were a whole host of printers and list owners and others who we had dealt with at other times that would not work for us because of our stand on this issue. So rather than hire a Democratic firm (which also would have been a PR nightmare) my firm handled what we could not get others to do. Now that the Party has calmed down toward us recently maybe I could have bid the work out but since my firm was named as one of the top in the Nation by a vote of our peers, why settle for less with another firm? And we were able to do the work at a rate we would not have gotten outside...but still within the market norm as is required by law.

    2)The second reason is that to save costs starting in 2005 when our revenue started declining, we outsourced staff functions and project coordination to my firms because they could do their work, outside of what volunteers could handle, more cost effectively. I have great and experienced staff and it now allows me to be able to personally oversee RFC's work and still do my other work.

    But when our firm orders printing or does computer work or designs literature or writes an ad script or does research, or records a radio ad they are required to bill RFC for that work and to be paid for it...or it is an illegal corporate contribution.

    All of our expenses have always been out in the open for anyone to see.

    Further the authors did not detail the pages and pages of accomplishments we gave them nor the fact that during the lean times I personally lent or gave the PAC money to keep going to the extent I was allowed by law.

    No that would have messed up their storyline.

  3. Anonymous5:04 AM

    This is Ann Stone again, I left out another important point, I never received money from the PAC that was other than to reimburse for money I had already paid out. Federal Law required that I be reimbursed. And again the authors of that article did not report that I in fact have both lent and given the PAC personal money as well. I am sure there are other points I have left out - please ask me any other questions about this article so I can provide the answers. While you might disagree with the purpose of my PAC or how we chose to spend our money, we did everything in the open and disclosed all.

  4. Anonymous7:20 PM

    You are a crook Ann...