Auditor campaign flap dismissed

An administration law judge has dismissed a campaign complaint that Republican challenger Pat Anderson filed against DFL State Auditor Rebecca Otto.

Otto’s campaign announced today that the judge determined there was no probable cause that the auditor had violated any law. Anderson, who is trying to win back the office she lost to Otto in 2006, accused the incumbent of making false statements about her tenure. She said Otto’s claim of doing three times more investigations than her was not accurate.

In a news release, Otto stood firm on the workload issue.

“As State Auditor, I have increased dramatically the productivity of the Office,” Otto wrote. “We are taking better care of taxpayer money and are more accountable to the people. Pat Anderson may hate to hear it, but it’s the truth and I will continue to campaign based on the truth.”

UPDATE

Pat Anderson issued a news release claiming Otto got off on a technicality, because there is no definition of “investigation” in state statute. She also pointed out that the Office of Administrative Hearings had no authority to address Otto’s referencing of information on her official web in campaign materials.

“According to this ruling, elected officials in Minnesota can put up whatever they want on their official websites, use that official site as a source in campaign materials and this statute – designed to confront false statements – and this process through the Office of Administrative Hearings is powerless to scrutinize how things are put on these websites and whether they are accurate – even when the very person in charge of the website is the one using it as a source,” Anderson said. “The basic facts of my complaint and the evidence I presented stand.”

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