Monday, March 11, 2013

Reibman Campaign Manager: Money Launderer or Witch Hunt Victim?

Mike Fleck
According to The Reading Eagle and Channel 69, Reading Mayor Vaughn Spencer might be in hot water. He may have acted as a straw party in 2011 to disguise illegal contributions from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) to two Philadelphia City Council candidates. Philadelphia has campaign finance limits, and IBEW had already maxed out on donations to these candidates. What makes this story very interesting to me is that, at the time in question, Mike Fleck was running Vaughn's campaign. He is now getting paid $5,000 per month to manage Glenn Reibman's primary bid for Northampton County Exec.

According to Vaughn's 2011 post-election campaign report, Vaughn donated $20,000 to two Philadelphia City Council candidates on 11/4/11. The very next day, IBEW donated $30,000 to Vaughn.

I'm a little bothered by this, even though the Fleckster and I have had our differences over the years.This violation, if it is one, would be a violation of Philadelphia's campaign finance laws. Yet it is Berks County's Republican Board, who has hired and paid $8,000 to an attorney to look over Vaughn's records, that is doing the "investigation".

Vaughn is a Democrat.

If Berks County feels so strongly about this, why hasn't it enacted its own campaign spending limits? Commissioners, of course, deny that politics is involved.

And the sky is pink.

I'd feel more comfortable about the motives for this investigation if it were being conducted by Philadelphia or the state AG.

I have called Fleck about this matter, and will update this post with his response when I get it.

Updated 1:30 AM: Mike Fleck had this to say: "Unlike the Berks County elections commission and its staff, I will not comment about an ongoing investigation. When the report is released, I believe in less than a month,  I will have plenty to say about this waste of taxpayer money."

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I take it that Vaughn is a Democrat? I ask, because why would the Berks County Republicans hire an attorney to look into this?

Bernie O'Hare said...

He is a Democrat. I will update my post to make that more clear. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Funny how the media spins this. Over at WFMZ's site, the just report that their is an investigation going on by attorney's. It leads people to believe that Vaughn is under an official criminal investigation. So of the comments on that website page are asking for him to be thrown out of office. But that site doesn't go into the specifics of party affiliation like you have.

Sounds like he really hasn't done anything wrong by Reading's standards. Sounds like this should be up to the Philly investigators.

And without the specifics that you bring forth, it doesn't appear to be politically driven. Good work!

Bernie O'Hare said...

Just trying to be fair, believe it or not. I don't even like Fleck, but this is obviously politically motivated.

Anonymous said...

Could same be happening with pawlowsk, since fleck is involved in his campaign.

Mark Baker said...

who is that with fleck?

Bernie O'Hare said...

That's Mick Dee, who does video.

Anonymous said...

didn't fleck get in trouble with archie follweilers race in the 187th district a couple of years ago? he screwed him for $7,000.00 and never paid him back. Seems like a pattern for fleck when it comes to campaign finances in berks county. berks must be virgin territory for con artists.

Anonymous said...

Mike, put down the fork and step away from the buffet dude.

Anonymous said...

Fleck is a wanna be and has always been a fuck up.Only a matter of time till he goes down

Anonymous said...

Is that guy's name really Mick Dee? Like McDonald's? So if he is Mick Dee, does that make the Fleckster the Clown, Ronald McDonald?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Mick Dee is a very nice guy. I think the Fleckster is fair game, but let's be nice to the civilians.