Senate DFLers hit with $100k campaign fine

Democrats in the Minnesota Senate must pay a $100,000 fine to settle campaign finance complaints filed against them by Republicans in 2012.

The state Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board imposed the penalty today for violations of the limit on contributions allowable to individual candidates.  The board ordered the DFL Senate Caucus campaign committee to pay half of the civil penalty within 30 days, and the rest within 90 days. There were no penalties assessed against candidates.

The Republican Party of Minnesota filed complaints last October alleging the DFL Party, the DFL Senate Caucus and five 13 state Senate candidates violated the law by coordinating photography and spending on campaign mailings. They said the photos of the candidates used in mailings were not publicly available on the internet. The DFL candidates named in the initial complaint were Melisa Franzen, Jim Carlson, Julie Bunn, Alice Johnson and Vicki Jensen. All but Bunn were elected. Democrats won control of the Senate.

Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook, said in a written statement that he was pleased the matter was resolved.

“We continue to maintain that our candidates and the caucus campaign committee complied with all campaign finance laws,” Bakk said. “Although we respectfully disagree with the Board’s position, we believe it is better to put this matter behind us.”



Keith Downey, chairman of the Republican Party of Minnesota, issued a statement criticizing Senate Democrats and raising questions about the 2012 election results.

“Many of the Democratic Senators on this list won their elections by narrow margins,” Downey said. “We will never know how this illegal coordination would have impacted the results in these races and ultimately control of the legislature.  They cheated, they won, but at least they are being held accountable now.”




  • …and a lil over a year and a half later, they’re payin legal and other fee’s to the tune of $396,000. towards the recently settled Michael Brodkorb lawsuit. Read that article here~

    The ethics complaint malicious in intent and designed to distract from their own shady ethics! “The pot calling the kettle black”!

    State regulators fine DFL Senate campaign $100,000. The penalty, one of the largest levied, is for breaking a ban on coordination with candidates.

    Published on Mar 19, 2012
    Tom Bakk and Sandra Pappas file an ethics complaint against Senator Geoff Michel in connection with Senator Amy Koch’s inappropriate relationship with her subordinate Michael Brodkorb.

    • garret


      I don’t disagree with your statement of “the pot calling the kettle black!” I find this statement true of our current political culture. It spans the spectrum of parties and it is killing the effect our leaders have on making real policies. Saying the GOP is more “dirty” than the DFL would be inaccurate. When we look through the eyes of a DFL’r, we want to see the other side as the bad guy. We want to be on the good side. We as a people need to stop seeing politics that way. It’s not a game of cops and robbers. Because I may have a different set of life experiences and I have a differing agenda that is important to me does not in any way make me an enemy. We differ, and we compromise. I don’t see that. I see mud slinging and childish games. This has got to stop. More time and hard earned constituent money is enabling these games. Our leaders are so obsessed with what the “other side” is doing or not doing that it has distracted from real progress. I’m sick of the games. I’ve called all my reps to let them know, if they play these kinds of games, I’m not voting for them and I’m writing about it.

      • My Story of Gang Stalking, Corruption and Domestic Terrorism

        Petitioning Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton

        Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton: Order an Independent Investigation Addressing the Corruption

        • garret

          Debra, I get it. You’re kind of a big deal. That’s really great. And I’m glad you’re raising your voice and doing your part to make in known the issues your community is having. This should be the job of your representatives. No matter the party. No matter how much you differ politically.

          • I’ve been going to my representatives for 7 years, to no avail. This isn’t really accomplishing anything and not going to deter me from informing the people. I will continue, advocating for change and stressing the importance of being informed next November when ballots are cast.

          • garret

            Have you gotten any response from your reps? I’ve read your petition and I’ll do what I can to help. I see you’ve got a spot lined up for conservative radio in boston, how about MPR? How can I help?

      • I’m also featured on the Meat and Potatoes Show with Christopher Maider on the 19th of January 1:00 PM bringing my story national attention.