Alan Greenblatt is a GOVERNING correspondent.E-mail: email@example.com
Dan Walters of the Sacramento Bee picks over the meaning of the failed recall attempt against California state Sen. Jeff Denham. Denham is a Republican who refused to go along with the majority Democrats on a big budget vote, leading Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a recall campaign against him.
Perata's claim was that Denham had broken a promise to his constituents to be moderate (aka, get with the Dems' program). This message never caught on with district voters, so Perata dropped the initiative not long before the June 3 balloting.
As Walters notes, the East Bay Express ran a story recently pointing out that political consultant Sandi Polka, a regular Perata ally, profited mightily from the recall -- and speculates that Perata's son may have done so as well:
Polka has made more than $2.5 million in the past four years from campaigns run by or associated with the senator. Some Sacramento insiders believe that Polka has been secretly funneling some of that money to the senator's son, Nick Perata, and his best friend, Timothy Staples, to allow both of them to avoid scrutiny. Polka has refused to comment, but it would not be illegal to pay the younger Perata and Staples as subcontractors and not report it on campaign disclosure forms.
Perata's response is that "it's merely political speculation that 'there must be some ulterior motive.'"
Yeah, why would anybody think that?
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