Ventura County Star reporter Timm Herdt has already reported on this story but since then State Senator Tony Strickland's legislation to ban politicians from paying their spouses for working on their campaigns has come closer to becoming state law.
Tony and Audra Strickland used to pay each other for working on each others' campaigns, but under this legislation that would be banned.
The argument for some is that allowing a spouse to be paid with campaign funds means politicians are able to transform campaign contributions into money they can deposit in their personal accounts.
This law won't apply to federal office holders like Rep. Gallegly, who pays his wife to work on his campaigns.
Elected officials often argue their spouses put in work that should be compensated and that they are hiring someone they trust.
What do you think? Do you support State Senator Tony Strickland's legislation?
I support his legislation. The appearance of a conflict of interest undermines our system, even if no conflict actually exists. I am glad he has changed his mind and now is the leading the push for this reform.
Click here for Timm Herdt's article.
Click on comments to read the full press release.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Matt Guthrie
August 27, 2009
Strickland Political Reform Legislation Earns Unanimous Support
Sacramento, CA - Today, Senate Bill 739 authored by State Senator Tony Strickland (R-Thousand Oaks), which prohibits a spouse or domestic partner of an elected official or candidate from receiving compensation in connection with fundraising, passed the Assembly 74-0.
"This bill is especially personal to me. Senate Bill 739 is an issue that was raised in one of my prior campaigns. While the activities are not uncommon or illegal, the public has demanded greater transparency in their government, including campaign activities. I believe the best legislators are the ones that listen to their constituents, which is why I introduced Senate Bill 739," said Senator Strickland.
Current law allows a spouse or domestic partner of an elected official or candidate to receive compensation for fundraising services on behalf of the elected official or candidate. Senate Bill 739 would prohibit a spouse or domestic partner from being paid by a campaign in connection with their services. A willful violation of this bill would be punishable as a misdemeanor.
Senate Bill 739 will now go to the Governor.
Tony Strickland represents California Senate District 19, which includes portions of Los Angeles, Ventura, and Santa Barbara counties.