SLO County is a special community for my family and friends, but even a casual observer of this campaign season can see that the corruption of our democratic process is a growing threat to our quality of life. By all accounts, 5th District Supervisor Debbie Arnold is a good person, but her priorities are compromised by campaign finance.
Her top donors include holding companies in Colorado and Arizona, and Karl Rove’s millionaire super PAC funder, B.W. Hughes from Malibu. Worse, secretive groups like “Aguiar for Assessor 2022” channel funds to Arnold and other campaigns throughout California. Arnold is so concerned about keeping this web of influence legal, she’s hired Jen Slater, consultant at the Irvine firm Campaign Compliance Group, as her treasurer.
This sort of political money laundering, while legal, corrupts our system of representation by distorting campaign priorities. We need leaders whose priority is community, not compliance. My vote is going to local businessman, farmer and community leader Eric Michielssen. Michielssen is proud to have local Republicans and Democrats running and funding his campaign. His fundraising is dwarfed by Arnold’s, but his campaign represents the strengths, not the weakness, of what is left of democracy in America.
Michael Latner, Atascadero
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