Saturday, June 19, 2010

Eachus, Veon And Campaign Debt

Let's roll back the tape in time to 2008. The states Democratic Campaign Panel decided in late 2007 to pay off the campaign debt, $40,683.00 worth, of former State Representative Michael Veon.

The House Democratic Campaign Committee in November and December paid $40,683 to retire Veon's campaign debt, according to Veon's report filed recently with the state election bureau. Veon could not be reached Wednesday.

"Mike's contribution as a leader to our collective effort meant a lot to us," said House Majority Policy Chairman Todd Eachus of Luzerne County, who chairs the campaign committee.

But the committee's other three leaders -- Reps. Joe Preston, Dan Frankel and Jennifer Mann -- apparently had no knowledge of the two payments.
"I didn't know about it. I haven't heard about it," said Preston of East Liberty, who handles candidate recruitment for the committee. "I'll ask questions about it."

"I had no idea this had been done," said Frankel of Squirrel Hill, co-chair of finance for the committee.

Mann of Allentown recently removed herself from the committee because she is running for state treasurer. She had been its fundraiser in Eastern Pennsylvania.

"I ... was not involved in the day-to-day workings. I know HDCC has bills that need to be paid," Mann said.

Eachus said there was precedent for retiring the debt of a former member, and that Veon donated countless hours and thousands of dollars to the committee.

"Everyone who looks at the public record can see it's a straightforward transaction, legal in nature," Eachus said.

Eachus always points to something being legal but never see its from the outside on whether it is morally right. Of course one must have morals before they apply.

Now roll the tape forward to 2010. Ex-power Veon gets 6-14 years
Former legislative kingpin was found guilty of using taxpayer resources in campaigns.


In December of 2006, Todd’s fellow lawmakers elected him to the Democratic House Leadership Team as the Policy Committee Chairman. In this position, Todd will work directly with the Speaker of the House, the House Majority Leader, and Governor Rendell to lead Pennsylvania forward.

In addition to his legislative leadership roles, Todd also provides political leadership for Pennsylvania Democrats. In 2006 Todd’s campaign strategies and dedication to help incumbent members and first-time candidates led directly to House Democrats retaking the Majority for the first time since 1994.

Back to the article about Michael Veon's conviction.

A dapper dresser with a cocky demeanor who wore cowboy boots and rode motorcycles, Veon was once the second-ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives. He served in the House for 22 years before voters ousted him in 2006 — the same year the party reclaimed a majority there for the first time in 12(years.)

There are many emails from AG Corbett's office regarding the Bonusgate investigation that include Todd Eachus's name in them from the Pennsylvania House computer system.
He may not have been charged but he cannot deny the contents of the emails.

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