Uncategorized — November 7, 2011 at 7:47 pm

Following the money: who wants Paul Scott’s recall to fail – Michelle Rhee, the DeVos family, and beyond


You can tell a great deal about a given situation, as they say, by following the money. As anti-union, anti-teacher Republican state Rep. Paul Scott faces the voters of his district in a recall election tomorrow, it’s useful to see who has been pouring money into his coffers for the past couple of months. All of this information is available from the Secretary of State’s website.

Contributor Date of donation Amount of donation
ONE TOUGH NERD PAC 11/4/11 $2,124.00
SMALL BIZ PAC 11/2/11 $2,500.00
DTE ENERGY PAC 10/27/11 $1,000.00
DTE ENERGY PAC 10/18/11 $1,000.00
MI DOCTOR’S PAC 10/27/11 $1,000.00
REALTORS PAC OF MI 9/20/11 $10,000.00
BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD 9/27/11 $2,500.00
MI BEER AND WINE PAC 10/19/11 $299.20
DENTAL PAC OF MICHIGAN 10/21/11 $250.00
AT&T MICHIGAN PAC 9/6/11 $1,000.00
AUTO DEALERS OF MI PAC (ADM PAC) 9/27/11 $250.00
BCBSM PAC 9/22/11 $2,500.00
MICHIGAN CHAMBER PAC III 10/20/11 $7,594.00
MICHIGAN CHAMBER PAC III 10/20/11 $6,808.01
MICHIGAN CHAMBER PAC III 10/20/11 $4,945.00
MICHIGAN CHAMBER PAC III 10/20/11 $3,120.99
MICHIGAN CHAMBER PAC III 10/20/11 $2,532.00

Those last few from the Michigan Chamber PAC are for radio and television ads. There are many individuals who contributed sizable amounts of cash, as well, often husbands and wives donating separately. Clearly Paul Scott has some friends with large bank accounts, some of them with a vested interest, it would appear, in ensuring that he keeps his seat.

Another point worth making is that this database doesn’t always show all expenditures, or information on candidates supported or opposed by an expenditure. For example, doing an expenditure analysis for all expenditures of any committee type since 10/15/2011 will not show Great Lakes Education Project’s spending money to help Scott out. However, we know that this group did, in fact, spend considerable money for radio ads on Scott’s behalf. How big? $7,900.

On the heels of radio and television commercials funded by the Michigan Education Association pushing for the recall of Representative Paul Scott (R-Grand Blanc), the Great Lakes Education Project (GLEP) debuted a new radio advertisement opposing the move.

The ad, titled “Promises,” has already begun playing on radio stations across Genesee County and will air throughout next Tuesday’s recall election.

“While parents fight to give their children every possible opportunity to receive a quality education, far too often special interest groups and policy makers in Lansing allow adult issues and aged turf battles to stand in the way of better results for our kids,” said Jim Barrett, Chairman of the Great Lakes Education Project. “Now these special interest groups are targeting Paul Scott because he dared to stand up for Michigan students.

“Representative Scott campaigned on balancing the budget in Lansing, fixing the state’s tax system and reforming education and he actually did it. This is the sort of record parents in Genesee County can be proud of. We are urging them to vote no on Tuesday’s recall.”

Who is/are the Great Lakes Education Project (GLEP)? It’s a group founded in 2001 by none other than Dick and Betsy DeVos, a couple with a long history of trying to destroy Michigan’s public school system by sending public monies to private & charter schools. GLEP is chaired by a guy named Jim Barrett who recently co-wrote a Detroit News editorial urging the Republican legislature to pass a package of bills the call the “Parental Empowerment Education Reform”. This package of legislation is aimed at increasing the number of charter schools in Michigan; a veritable death knell for our public school system. Since Barrett is the former President and CEO of the Michigan Chamber of Commerce, it’s not too surprising to find them heavily funding Scott’s recall fight. A good run-down on GLEP can be found at the Michigan Populist Blog. Connections to Blackwater/Xe founder Eric Prince and other revelations will curl your hair.

GLEP recently reported $65,000 in contributions on a single day two weeks ago (October 28, 2011), about half of which was from DeVos family members. Another ten grand came from Robert Vanderweide and his wife. Vanderweide is the President of the Orlando Magic. This is about the same time they spent over $23,000 for media ads when combined with the “Promises” ad buy.

Finally, we have Michelle Rhee’s group “StudentsFirst” who have registered a Super PAC in Michigan called “Parents & Teachers for Putting Students First”. StudentsFirst, as I have previously reported, spent over $1 million in Michigan already this year to push their anti-teacher, anti-public school agenda. This group is giving financial assistance to Paul Scott’s recall fight, already spending over $70,000 on his behalf. On October 4th, Rhee’s group dropped another windfall on them, an astounding $155,000.

These are the groups that are fighting like hell to make sure that Paul Scott isn’t recalled. They are groups that are anti-teacher, anti-public schools and are doing everything they can to outsource our kids’ education to the private sector.

As they say, if you want to know what’s going on, follow the money. In this case, the money is flooding in from groups that are hellbent on destroying public schools in Michigan and across the country.

The recall election is tomorrow (Tuesday.) If you’re in Grand Blanc, please do not stay home. Go to the polls, vote to recall Paul Scott, and show these anti-teacher conservatives that we’ve had enough of their money and their un-American efforts to destroy our public schools.