Complaint says Naples Tea Party in violation of election laws

— The Naples Tea Party presents themselves as stewards of good government, but one Naples man says the organization is not living up to the claim.

Naples resident John Lundin has filed a complaint against the Naples Tea Party to the Florida Elections Commission, mailing it Monday to the Commission’s offices in Tallahassee.

In the complaint, he argued that the Naples Tea Party is in violation of the Florida Division of Elections laws for not filing as a political committee.

“They act as a political committee. They are a partisan political group against (President Barack) Obama and the Democrats,” he said. “They totally have the right to do it, but they are a political committee by definition by the state of Florida. And they need to file as such.”

The Florida Division of Elections states on it’s Web site: “A combination of two or more individuals (including organizations) must file as a committee and submit campaign reports when during a calendar year, in access of $500 aggregate, they:

■ Accept contributions or make expenditures to expressly advocate the election or defeat of a candidate or issue;

■ Contribute to any candidate, committee or political party; or

■ Sponsor a proposed constitutional amendment by initiative and intend to seek signatures of registered electors."

“The Naples Tea Party is in violation because their stated partisan purpose is to defeat the political agenda of President Barack Obama and the Democratic Party,” Lundin argued in his complaint.

Lundin said the Naples Tea Party is in violation for sponsoring a fundraiser Thursday, March 4, for Republican candidate Allen West, who is running for the Florida House of Representatives in District 22.

“The Naples Tea Party is in violation for requesting campaign donation of Section 106.011(11), F.S., for requesting campaign donation of $25 - $250 for Republican partisan candidate Allen West with expressed purpose of defeating Democratic incumbent Ron Klein,” Lundin wrote in his complaint. “The Naples Tea Party sponsored numerous events in 2009. They sponsored an event on February 6, 2001 [sic] in Naples at the intersection of U.S. 41 and Pine Ridge where they accepted in kind contributions of food, signs, printed materials, booth, trailer and sound system over the $500.”

Barry Willoughby, organizer for the Naples Tea Party, said he was unaware of the complaint Monday evening.

"I don't know Mr. Lundin .... have never met him and have no knowledge of a complaint filed against the Naples Tea Party other than many progressive socialists don't like us," he said in an e-mail.

Lundin, who held a counter event to the Feb. 6 protest on U.S. 41 and Pine Ridge Road, said he organized his counter-protest as a member of the Collier County Democratic Club.

“As a political committee, we have to file reports every three months,” he said. “That way, people know where the money is coming from that is being used in politics.”

Dave Carpenter, qualifying officer for the Collier County Supervisor of Elections, said a complaint of that nature would be filed with the Florida Elections Commission and remain confidential.

“If a complaint was filed the Naples Tea Party would be informed within five days of the filing,” he wrote in an e-mail. “We usually hear about complaints during the investigative process. An investigator for the FEC will contact us and ask us for certified copies of any filings.’

Carpenter said his office had not heard of a complaint as of Monday, but that doesn’t mean one hasn’t been filed. He added that the Supervisor of Elections Office has never had any requests from the Tea Party regarding their activities or filings they might have to make.

Should the Florida Elections Commission finds Lundin’s complaints valid, it can impose civil penalties in the form of fines not to exceed $1,000 per count.

© 2010 marconews.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 12

liberator100 writes:

If the person who filed the complaint is the piece of lard walking down the street in the attached photo; I would not worry too much about it. He is obviously as clueless as Barack Hussein Obama... Get a life man! Exercise, eat right and drink lots of tea...

happy6 writes:

hey mr. lundin...go back where you came from...probably Vermont....or maybe chicago....or better yet...cuba,venezuela or iran...you are a joke...but you do need some excercise to lose those lbs.....

Markis82 writes:

Go get them John Lundin. I’m behind you 100%. Not everyone in SW Florida is a selfish, sore losing republican. Get rid of this partisan, good for nothing, illegal fund raising.

ajm3s writes:

Mr. Lundin is confusing free speech from a group that has no party affiliation and is not interested in creating a party. The Tea party movement is a movement that was loosely organized under a simple message: "Smaller governmemt and stop the spending" .

Do we need to file as a political committe? Under the rules, my family needs to file, blasted I broke the law again.

Sometimes Common Sense is the best committee. Where do I file?

Markis82 writes:

in response to liberator100:

If the person who filed the complaint is the piece of lard walking down the street in the attached photo; I would not worry too much about it. He is obviously as clueless as Barack Hussein Obama... Get a life man! Exercise, eat right and drink lots of tea...

Yea, you're a real liberator!!

ajm3s writes:

in response to Markis82:

Go get them John Lundin. I’m behind you 100%. Not everyone in SW Florida is a selfish, sore losing republican. Get rid of this partisan, good for nothing, illegal fund raising.

Ouch! You have a complete misunderstanding of the Tea Party movement. It was established to go beyond partisanship and focus on the core values of America and redirect the Federal government to return to the vision of our founding fathers.

I will enter you in the non-selfish, elated democrat column. Yeah get real.

Markis82 writes:

in response to ajm3s:

Ouch! You have a complete misunderstanding of the Tea Party movement. It was established to go beyond partisanship and focus on the core values of America and redirect the Federal government to return to the vision of our founding fathers.

I will enter you in the non-selfish, elated democrat column. Yeah get real.

Well you could have fooled me. I have not seen anything from this movement I call core values of America. It is all staight republican party propaganda. I don't think the founding fathers saw Corperate America running this country. I don't think the founding fathers saw invading a country to protect US oil interests. I don't think the founding fathers imagined trickle down economics. You're the ones who need to get real.

titanbite writes:

in response to ajm3s:

Mr. Lundin is confusing free speech from a group that has no party affiliation and is not interested in creating a party. The Tea party movement is a movement that was loosely organized under a simple message: "Smaller governmemt and stop the spending" .

Do we need to file as a political committe? Under the rules, my family needs to file, blasted I broke the law again.

Sometimes Common Sense is the best committee. Where do I file?

You say you're not a party,then in the same sentence you go on to say "the Tea PARTY movement is a movement,blah,blah,blah."

You yourself call the "movement" a "Party",I guess that would mean you're a political party,wouldn't it?

Of course you're a political Party,You take donations,you support particular candidates from a certain Party,the Republican Party,and you gather to spread your partisan,political message.

Sometimes,people think they possess common sense,but,for most,it's just an illusion.

stinks will have "Lot's of "Tea Party" business" to tend this week. lol

titanbite writes:

in response to ajm3s:

Ouch! You have a complete misunderstanding of the Tea Party movement. It was established to go beyond partisanship and focus on the core values of America and redirect the Federal government to return to the vision of our founding fathers.

I will enter you in the non-selfish, elated democrat column. Yeah get real.

Of course,THAT'S why people misunderstand the "Tea Party",you guys only support Republicans,what's so "going beyond partisanship" about that?

Who do you think your kidding.

I can guarantee you,you're only kidding your own membership and yourselves! lol

Everyone else knows full well you guys,mostly guys,are all a bunch of disgruntled Republicans who went about their existance under Pres.Bush with blinders on,why,because he was a Republican.

As soon as a Democrat takes office,now everyone is in a tizzy.

Where the heck were you when Bush was driving up a ten trillion dollar debt,mostly to Commie's in China.

I know,you had your heads buried in the sand,scared to death waiting to have your butts blown off by terrorists.

PARANOIA WILL DESTROY YA!

Now you get to be paranoid about whether you can even be a political party without screwing it up,good luck with that!

ajm3s writes:

in response to Markis82:

Well you could have fooled me. I have not seen anything from this movement I call core values of America. It is all staight republican party propaganda. I don't think the founding fathers saw Corperate America running this country. I don't think the founding fathers saw invading a country to protect US oil interests. I don't think the founding fathers imagined trickle down economics. You're the ones who need to get real.

The Founding Fathers understood the meaning of individual rights and the responsibility it entails. In fact, the Constitution is a collection of negative rights. Things the government cannot take from you.

The Federal government was to have very limited rights and the balance was given to the States as voted upon collectively from its citizenry. They did not believe in "one fits all mentality". The Tea Pary movement wants to return or at least swing the pendulum to diminsh the power of the federal government.

You miss the message of the Tea Party movement, in fact, you see it only in terms of left/right and republican/democrat.

Step outside of the political box and watch as Democrats and Republicans both clamor for control.

Yes there are fringe groups who make outrageous claim and there are some policiticians who are attempting to use the Tea Party movement for their gain, but the Tea Party grew out of a general discontent with the direction of Washington and it boiled over as the Obama administration exploded our debt and continued to pursuit Big Government solutions for problems that have lingered for decades.

All your examples only bolster the message of the Tea Party movement. Remember, Tea Pary movement rose from discontent from the Bush and Obama presidencies because they saw nothing change in terms of Corporate America, invading a couuntry or economics. Its remained the same except Obama wants more control by the Federal Government but the results are the same, Corporate America will align with government to its advantage, we will invade countries who attack us and government will try to control the free market.

ajm3s writes:

in response to titanbite:

Of course,THAT'S why people misunderstand the "Tea Party",you guys only support Republicans,what's so "going beyond partisanship" about that?

Who do you think your kidding.

I can guarantee you,you're only kidding your own membership and yourselves! lol

Everyone else knows full well you guys,mostly guys,are all a bunch of disgruntled Republicans who went about their existance under Pres.Bush with blinders on,why,because he was a Republican.

As soon as a Democrat takes office,now everyone is in a tizzy.

Where the heck were you when Bush was driving up a ten trillion dollar debt,mostly to Commie's in China.

I know,you had your heads buried in the sand,scared to death waiting to have your butts blown off by terrorists.

PARANOIA WILL DESTROY YA!

Now you get to be paranoid about whether you can even be a political party without screwing it up,good luck with that!

Tea Party movement is not enamored with the Bush administration since they increased government spending. The frustration reached a crescendo when Obama promised hope and change. Then the independents and demoocrats and republicans saw politics as usual. They wanted fiscal responsibility, when they saw the government bailing out investment banks and taking over the major car industry, the hope and change was simply a contiuation of the Bush Administration on steroids.

As in the first Tea Party, they felt they were not being represented any longer by those that are elected. That is why they called themselves the Tea Party. Again as in the original Tea Party, it was a demonstration NOT a party affiliation.

These are Americans, some of whom like myself did not vote until the tender age of 54 years, but rose out of their slumber and began to take part in understanding how we got here. So we read history and noticed that the founding fathers wrote a Constitution which limited the rights of government so that its people could be free.

They came out and protested as a loose group of people that share the same vision. Oh yeah there are fringe elements (as there are in all movements) but the message is clear. The only way to ensure change is to participate and petition as well as demonstrate in a peaceful manner to raise awareness. To tell Washington if we can be heard.

Candidates coming forth that move us away from central government will be encouraged to run. The candidates may not be perfect in every respect but when given choices we must begin to evaluate on fiscal responsibility and diminishing the control of central government.

Understanding and reading history is not paranoia its enlightening. And I believe the Constitution is a historical document that must be adhered to and if changes are to be made Americans can ask for Amendments to the Constittion.

See the way I look at it, this news story is about an individual crying out that the Tea Party movement is violating statute law. And the Tea Party is crying out that the Constitution is being violated by our representatives.

Lets see where do we start.

ajm3s writes:

Correction: ....."As in the first Tea Party, they felt they were not being represented any longer by those that are elected"

I should have stated: As in the first Tea Party, they felt they were not being represented although they are taxed.

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