Challenger Sam Bennett says NO, and has just issued a press release condemning this tactic.
ALLENTOWN – Over the weekend, residents of the 15th Congressional District received campaign propaganda in their mailbox at Lehigh Valley taxpayers’ expense. Republican Congressional candidate Charles W. Dent mailed out his 6-page, color, glossy “energy update” apparently just outside of the 90-day window before an election where members of Congress are not allowed to use their taxpayer-funded mailing privileges.
Dent spent just $722.51 on mail from his congressional office in 2007, according to the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives. But in the first 3 months of 2008 alone, he spent $18,845.38 on the so-called franked mail, which doesn’t include this glossy mailing.
“With the $75,000 Congressman Dent’s received from Big Oil, you’d sure think he could afford to pay for a mailing out of his campaign funds. Instead, he’s leaving Lehigh Valley taxpayers footing the bill,” said Bennett campaign manager, Kathryn Seck. “Everyday our country is falling further into debt and more of our taxpayer dollars are being spent in Iraq, not here at home. But Dent sees fit to spend taxpayer money on his campaign direct mail instead of on policies that will move this country in the right direction. Maybe this is Dent’s plan for public campaign financing.”