Monday, September 11, 2006
Liquor distributor, casinos funnel funds into Champion campaign
A shell organization apparently formed by superlobbyist Harry Gallagher to distribute campaign contributions for one of his clients chipped in the maximum $650 to Sen. Norma Champion's reelection campaign, according to documents filed with the Missouri Ethics Commission.
The documents show the donation to the Springfield Republican from Competitive Enterprise Growth PAC was made July 27, the day the PAC registered with the Ethics Commission. The PAC has received only one contribution, according to the Ethics Commission, $27,000 from one of Gallagher's clients, Glazer's Wholesale Drug, a Dallas-based company which distributes liquor, beer, and wines.
The address for Competitive Enterprise Growth is 101 East High Street...the same address as Gallagher's lobbying firm, Gallagher & Associates. Gallagher's long list of clients, in addition to Glazer's, includes R. J. Reynolds and the Poultry Federation.
Ms. Champion also received $350 from another Gallagher client, the Missouri Insurance Coalition PAC, according to her most recent filing with the Commission.
The biggest contribution, according to that filing, $3,200, came from the 31st Republican Senatorial Committee out of Raymore. The most recent disclosure document from that committee, filed July 16, 17 days before Ms. Champion received her donation, showed $10,000 in contributions...all from casino interests...$5,000 from Harrah's Operating Company, $3,000 from Isle of Capri Casinos, and $1,000 apiece from Ameristar Casino Kansas City and Ameristar Casino St. Charles.
Ms. Champion also added a $650 contribution from MORESPAC, the fourth contribution she has received this year from organizations which list the mailing address of P. O. Box 1865, Jefferson City, an address used by another superlobbyist, William Gamble, whose clients include Ameristar Casinos.
The June 4 Turner Report, reviewed Ms. Champion's April quarterly report, which showed a $500 contribution from the Missouri Physician Assistant PAC, $600 from Missouri Assisted Living PAC, $500 from MO Plan and $300 from the Missouri Pharmacy PAC. The first three all share the P. O. Box 1865 address, while all four are represented by Gamble's lobbying firm, Gamble & Schlemeier.
P. O. Box 1865 is also the mailing address for: Independent Colleges and Universities of Missouri, Missouri Association for Councils of Government, the Missouri Hotel and Motel Association, Missouri Beverage Association, Missouri Fire Service Alliance, and the Missouri Railroad Association, according to various internet listings and the listings of the Missouri Ethics Commission.
Ms. Champion's contributions from MO Plan, the Missouri Physician Assistant PAC and the Missouri Assisted Living PAC and Missouri Pharmacy PAC all came on Jan. 5, according to Ethics Commission documents.