Republican congressional candidate Tom Emmer on Tuesday reported $850 in debt for "advertising" to his office remodeler.
He had cut a video praising the firm, Integrity Exteriors and Remodelers, standing in front of a massive campaign sign. The firm then ran the video on television, which could run afoul of campaign finance laws forbidding direct corporate contributions.
The ad was quickly pulled from the air but the Emmer campaign paid for the cost of airing it, said David FitzSimmons, a state representative from Albertville and an Emmer advisor.
"It is the full cost of everything associated with it," FitzSimmons said. Asked if the campaign consulted campaign finance experts about the payment or expected payment, he said he was done to resolve the problem as they were advised to do.
Carlson College political science professor Steven Schier said the payment keeps the issue alive.
or expected payment, was derived as the resolution to the problem in consultation and advice
"I don't think it ends. It just raises more questions on how it happened in the first place," he said.
The $850 debt to Integrity Exteriors appears on the campaign finance report Emmer filed with the Federal Election Commission on Tuesday. The kerfuffle over the ad, first featured on the Bluestem Prairie blog and in the Star Tribune then on Comedy Central's Colbert Report, sprung up at the end of last month, just as the quarter was closing.
The Emmer campaign also reported $8,177 in debt to Rock Solid Companies for rent and about $700 in debt to the candidate himself for expenses.
Emmer reported raising $152,000 in the last three months. About $41,000 of that is off limits until the general election fight. Three other Republican candidates are also running for the GOP nod in the heavily Republican Sixth Congressional District.
Gov. Mark Dayton, speaking to a mostly Republican audience at the annual Minnesota Business Partnership dinner, repeated his familiar attack on the House GOP, blaming them for a legislative impasse on transportation.
It takes a certain sort of magic for a presidential debate to shift a race, it seems, some weird alchemy combining ingredients like viewership and mistakes and perceptions and medium. It's almost never about policy.