by Javier Manjarres
The Shark Tank has been chronicling Ozzie deFaria’s congressional campaign by fairly and accurately calling him out on missteps that either he or his campaign has made thus far in the Republican congressional primary.
The Sunshine State News stated that Mr. deFaria has boasted of raising $400K in total receipts. This is true, deFaria has raised $394,613 since jumping into the race to unseat Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
But deFaria is trying one of the oldest tricks in political campaign finance, which is to put out a big bold fundraising number when in reality the dollar amount he is actually posting is hollow at best.
Dear Supporter -
This week, thanks to you, I’m pleased to say that we reported nearly $400,000 in total receipts. Over 1,700 people from 48 states have donated to my campaign, and we have over $200,000 cash-on-hand. Because of you, we’re beginning to put the resources in place to win. -Ozzie deFaria
The truth is this- Of the almost $400K that deFaria has reported, $273,173 is from himself. Meaning that since deFaria got in the race in the 4th quarter of 2011, he has only been able to raise $121,441 from “individual” donors, whereas Karen Harrington, the incumbent candidate in the race, has reported $218,739 from ‘individual’ donors-about a 2-to-1 advantage for Harrington over deFaria.
According to the Sunshine State News article, deFaria took a shot at Karen Harrington for carrying $232,783 in debt. This attack seems hypocritical since deFaria has accrued a larger debt-load than Harrington-$40,390 more debt, to be exact. In fact, Harrington has only lent herself $5000 to her campaign in the 2012 election cycle- the rest of her sizeable debt is from the 2010 election cycle.
deFaria’s debt amounts seem a little fuzzy. Below you will see that deFaria’s FEC report summary posts that he has only lent his campaign $150,000. However, the total of $273,783 categorized as ‘candidate’ by the FEC is from other monies donated or loaned to the campaign from deFaria. If this is the case, why isn’t the extra $123,173 listed as a loan?
Upon reviewing the individual postings on his FEC report, there are (3) Schedule A (Itemized Receipts) posts that were made in March of 2012 that clearly show deFaria contributing to his debt load (candidate). The first post was made on 3/1 for $12,000.07. The second was made on 3/30 for $50,000. These two posts alone added with the previous ‘candidate’ obligatory total add up to the $273,783 that is posted under ‘candidate’ obligation.
Interestingly enough, there is a the third Schedule A (Itemized Receipt) post for $50,000, that was also made on 3/30. This particular post is a bit confusing in that it is listed as an itemized receipt, yet deFaria subtracts it from the initial $273,783, making it in essence a reimbursement?
Another of deFaria’s claims that needs to be looked at is his assertion that he has over $200K cash on hand. Again, this is true, deFaria actually has $201,684 cash on hand. The interesting note about this figure to point out is that deFaria had to infuse an extra $50K on the very last day of the reporting cycle to bring him to that total of $201,684.
Again, this is just political smoke-n-mirrors by deFaria- it’s not illegal and it’ s another political tactic that is widely used, but it’s also just a little bit shady of him to misrepresent his campaign like this.
There is nothing wrong with pouring one’s own hard earned money into a political campaign, it is actually a very noble and admirable move by anyone who is willing to put some ‘skin in the game.’ But the problem with deFaria’s cash infusion is that his campaign is trying to make it seem as if he as raised all that money from individual donors.
We decided to dig into the Federal Election Commission (FEC) reports to get an accurate assessment of ‘all’ the candidates that have reported to the FEC. Look over the FEC reports and decide for yourself. If you like the post, please share it below.
Ozzie deFaria (Link to FEC)
* Column 1 is Total Disbursements; Column 2 is Cash on Hand; Column 3 is Total Loan(s); Column 4 is the Last reporting date
Karen Harrington (Link to FEC)
Joe Kaufman (Link to FEC)
Gineen Bresso (Link to FEC)
Juan Eliel Garcia