5/17/11

UFCW, AFSCME paid for Hoosier Fleebaggers

Out-of-state union cash colors state politics
Thanks largely to an influx of cash from its labor allies, Indiana's Democratic party stayed on solid financial footing while Democratic state House members were holed up in Illinois for five weeks during this year's General Assembly session.

An analysis of campaign finance records shows that Indiana Democrats got 905 small-dollar donations from individuals, a majority of whom live out of state, during and in the week after the legislative boycott.

That was a significant increase from previous years, but it was $155,000 the party got from unions that did the most to foot the Democrats' bill for five weeks at the Comfort Suites hotel in Urbana, Ill.

There, House Democrats ran up a hotel tab of $84,953.70. They also paid for meals and other travel expenses, as well as a teleconference town hall meeting with supporters in their home districts. The total cost was about $127,000.

They could cover much of that bill thanks to their two largest donations, both from national union groups' political action committees that have traditionally supported Democrats in Indiana and elsewhere.

The first, for $50,000, came March 2 from the United Food and Commercial Workers. The second, for another $50,000, came March 9 from the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

Indiana-based labor unions also kicked in a total of $42,000 to the two bank accounts — one of which is filed with the state, and the other at the federal level — that Democrats used for donations during the boycott.
(full story at courierpress.com)

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