DA George Gascón Says He Won't Investigate Run, Ed, Run Campaign

Categories: Politics
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Caroline Chen
Right back atcha, Aaron Peskin
As if mayoral candidates weren't already pissed enough about Mayor Ed Lee's last-minute jump into the race. District Attorney George Gascón is now saying he will not investigate the questionable Run, Ed, Run campaign that helped get Lee drafted into the mayor's race.

Mayoral candidates and community members have accused Progress For All, the committee behind the Run, Ed, Run campaign, of skirting election laws to help Lee gain financial leverage even before he jumped into the race on Aug. 12. The Ethics Commission recently cleared the committee of any wrongdoing, and now the District Attorney is saying there's no good reason to investigate it any further.

"We conducted a preliminary investigation and concluded there is insufficient evidence to proceed with any further investigation." Gascón said in a statement released.

Aaron Peskin, chair of the local Democratic Party, had written a pointed letter to the Ethics Commission last month, detailing exactly how this shadowy campaign was illegal. The campaign had filed as a general purpose committee -- one that isn't there to raise money for a candidate, but rather to inform voters. However, the campaign was blatantly rallying around Lee, giving him a boost even before he was a candidate.

But the Ethics Commission decided that there was nothing illegal about this activity since Lee himself was not yet a candidate. The committee disbanded about a week before Lee officially announced his candidacy. The Commission also decided that it was okay for volunteers who worked on Run, Ed, Run to now join Lee's campaign.

"It's business as usual," Peskin told SF Weekly. "Just one hand washing the other."

Next stop: the U.S. Attorney, Peskin tells us.

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3 comments
Spartan73
Spartan73

Gascon is completely unqualifed to make judgement's like this, he has no back round working as a prosecutor, he's just sort of winging it and hoping nobody notices. With his level of experience he's qualified to be an entry level prosecutor only. Typically a lawyer with no experience prosecuting crimes starts out with simple misdemeanor cases, then they work up to more complicated cases. Here Gascon is making a judgement about a complicated case, even though he's never tried a single case! He just doesn't have any credibility, he got appointed to this job because he was pals with ex-Mayor. 

njudah
njudah

We all know George was going to do this. But don't worry the US Attorney is involved now.

Only in SF do you need outside counsel to do all the work around here!

SFCitizen
SFCitizen

Don't know that the Ethics Commish cleared anybody of anything - they don't claim to have gone that far:

"What the Commission decided on August 8 was that Mayor Lee was not a “candidate” as defined by the Political Reform Act simply by virtue of being the sitting mayor.  The decision came after lengthy discussion and public comment. The Commission did not decide whether or not Mayor Lee or Progress for All engaged in any improper conduct.  Such a merits hearing could only occur after the Commission staff received or instituted a complaint, conducted an investigation and a probable cause hearing and if the Commission then found probable cause of an ethics violation.  While time consuming, these procedures ensure due process for all."http://www.sfethics.org/ethics...

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