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Barth Late in Filing Pre-Primary Campaign Finance Report

I said I'm 95% sure I'll vote for Jeff Barth Tuesday. That number can go down.

If I'm going to give Secretary Gant a hard time for his tardiness, I must do the same to Jeff Barth. Pre-primary campaign finance reports for South Dakota's federal candidates were due May 24. Matt Varilek submitted his pre-primary report on May 24.

On May 25, the Federal Election Commission sent Jeff Barth's campaign treasurer an unpleasant all-caps notice saying Washington hadn't received a pre-primary report from Barth yet. Barth submitted his pre-primary report on May 26, at 00:05. Grrr!

Jeff, paperwork and transparency matter. If you want to run for Congress, you've got to cross these t's. Even if you don't have much to report (the pre-primary form shows a meager $450 in cash coming in from sources other than loans), you've got to follow the law and get these reports done!


  1. Anna 2012.06.02

    Being an internet celebrity is probably time-consuming!

  2. Bill Fleming 2012.06.02

    Not a big deal.

  3. Douglas Wiken 2012.06.02

    Don Frankenfeld's idea of special state bank accounts for candidates would make much of the reporting unnecessary and greatly simplify campaigns and campaign accounting.

  4. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.02

    Boy, Anna, don't we know it! ;-)

  5. Michael Black 2012.06.02

    I am disappointed that a perfectly viable candidate cannot get his stuff together and follow the law.

  6. Matt Groce 2012.06.02

    Couldn't bother to turn it in, then he turns in some lousy numbers. It's like he feels if he puts in a few days work that's good enough. He just seems lazy.

  7. Mark 2012.06.02

    Timely filing is important, and I can forgive a missed deadline by a few days. Stuff happens. But when stuff happens, the campaign owes an explanation to the election officials and the public. However, what really gets me to roll my eyes (w/ apologies for going off topic) is AFTER campaigns are over and the campaigns liquidate for pennies on the dollar.

  8. D.E. Bishop 2012.06.02

    Yup, Frankenfeld's idea about the bank accounts is great. (Please, no one tell Ff I said that.)

  9. SDprogressive 2012.06.02

    I love how many new bloggers you get right around election time spouting out negativity against Barth and support for Varilek. I wonder if all of the negativity will work, I actually think Barth welcomes it because it shows that he is at least a threat, but probably he is winning if they feel the need to tear him down (especially considering they have the money to spend 7 dollars to every one dollar he has, if they actually wanted to get their message across). As for this issue, I think two points need to be made. 1. YOU NEED TO GET YOUR FORMS IN ON TIME!. 2. Candidates actually hire this process out generally, so blaming Barth for it being late is really not entirely fair, the fact that it was in soon after the deadline is at least a good attempt to right a wrong. Too bad he doesn't have the Johnson campaign team doing his books for him.

  10. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.02

    The first new commenters I drew were pro-Barth/anti-Varilek folks.

    Blaming Barth is perfectly fair. He's captain of the ship, big or small. If the larger Varilek machine screwed up, we'd blame Varilek.

  11. SDprogressive 2012.06.02

    It is a fair thing to judge him as Captain of the ship, but all in all being a day and 5 minutes late is not the end of the world. I am not saying that it is a good thing or something that should go without criticism, but there are bigger problems out there to worry about. Also, it would be worse if the numbers came in after the primary or they showed some sort of suspicious donations.

  12. Knight of Cydonia 2012.06.02

    I'd give him fair opportunity to explain himself before making judgements on his character for filing a fiscal document, that needs to follow specific standards, two days late. Rules are rules, obviously...but, as somebody that used to help candidates in ND file the state-based financial reporting paperwork, it's a pain-in-the-arse if there's even a minor discreptancy that needs to be figured out, and it's even worse if you're unfamiliar with the rules or if the candidate is stuck doing his/her own on top of all the other candidate stuff. A lot of stuff could cause a setback of a day or two.

    Matt Varilek, in regard to knowing the bureaucracy and possibly having a connection that did all the paperwork stuff for him, probably had a huge advantage over Barth in that regard.

    I agree that Barth should be more considerate and/or knowledgable (again - not sure what the problem was) of the bureaucratic requirements set forth by the FEC and other applicable commissions and laws, but if this is THE tipping reason between a Varilek vote and a Barth vote, it is in my humble opinion that you need to deeply reassess how you choose candidates.

    That being said, I would appreciate a brief explanation by Barth if one hasn't already been provided. I also commend "caheidelberger" for being fair in his complaints...though Gant was actually running for the office that oversees financial reporting for candidates at a state level.

  13. Knight of Cydonia 2012.06.03

    *Is actually in the office that oversees this sort of stuff. I think my mind's still peeved off at the 2010 election.

  14. mike 2012.06.03

    I have a feeling that most people who vote for Barth in this primary will regret voting for him in about 2 months. He's full of it and he's a nut.

    Sure he's fun but I don't want him having the keys to any vehicle if I want to even make a dent in Noem. He will say so many far out things that she will look normal and intelligent next to the crazy barth.

    Varilek is the real deal if he can spice it up a bit.

  15. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.03

    [Hey, the B.S. pseudonyms are starting to get out of hand. Can we all get back to real names here in the comment section?]

  16. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.03

    Mike, I see a fine line between crazy and justly angry at the nutty legislation Noem and the GOP put forth.

  17. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.03

    Fact check: the form was five minutes and one day late. Rules are rules. Follow them. We do not profit by minimizing them, because we want to be able to criticize the other side if they don't follow key finance rules as well.

    Indeed, it would be much more significant if the report showed any questionable donations. It is significant that the report shows almost no donations. There is a certain amount of work one must do to win. As I note above, if Jeff wins Tuesday, he will need to change his no-fundraising strategy.

  18. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.03

    [And commend "caheidelberger"? Why is my name placed in quotation marks?]

  19. Jeff Barth 2012.06.03

    It is my campaign. It is my mistake.
    I have been out on the road and could not comment sooner.

  20. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.03

    I understand the challenges, Jeff, and appreciate your taking time to comment. That's one big reason you'll need to step up the fundraising: in pure practical terms, you need to have enough cash on hand to hire campaign helpers to handle such administrative tasks and allow you to focus on campaigning.

  21. Bill Fleming 2012.06.03

    Here's a way to "step up his fundraising," Cory. Send him some money. I did.

  22. Knight of Cydonia (or Chris) 2012.06.03

    I use a B.S. pseudonym because I don't want my name tied to my comments for professional reasons. As what I percieved to be a courtesy, I picked something absurd so it was clear that wasn't my name, which is something I've done on most other blogs I've commented on. This was the first time I was ever called out on that, which actually impressed me.

    If you prefer to call me a name, you may call me Chris, which is my real first name. I did some stuff. But I did not ride an ostrich. Rode a giraffe though once at that one zoo in the Bronx in NYC.

  23. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.03

    We prefer real names whenever possible, Chris. (A last initial, or even a middle initial, will help, since we have a couple other Chrises who drop by now and then, and we don't want you catching heat for any of their rhetorical bomb-throwing! ;-) ). Thank you. I find that it's easier to treat fellow discussants civilly, as real people, when they attach real names to their words. We're all neighbors, real citizens, not literary figures or superheroes.

  24. larry kurtz 2012.06.03

    except for stace nelson and charlie hoffman: legends in their own minds....

  25. Barry Smith 2012.06.03

    The real names are less scary too. When I first saw a post by a Knight of Cydonia, I was sure that one of Sibby's boogeymen had come to haunt.

  26. Bill Fleming 2012.06.03

    Thanks Chris!

  27. Carter 2012.06.03

    I was hoping that his name would have been Matthew Bellamy. Ah, well. One more disappointment!

  28. Bob Newland 2012.06.03

    C'mon, give the fat bald guy a break. He was still huffing and puffing after his long walk in the park.

  29. Chris E. 2012.06.03

    Thanks for the welcome, and I'll use Chris E. from now on as well.

    I was listening to the band Muse while writing that, which is where "Knight of Cydonia" came from (Matthew Bellamy is the lead vocalist), but I've heard of Edward Bellamy and Looking Back as well.

  30. larry kurtz 2012.06.04

    Jeff Barth is convivial, mature, unscripted, and honest. Kristi Noem and her earth hater party are acting like National Socialists: it’s just that simple.

    The primary season is a perfectly acceptable time to exxxpose the earth haters like South Dakota's incumbent At-large representative for what they are: extremists using tactics only Joseph Mengele could love.

  31. Bill Fleming 2012.06.04

    Barth is on MSNBC Chuck Todd right now, this minute.

  32. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.04

    What did he say? What did he say?!

  33. Bill Fleming 2012.06.04

    He said he would have been happy to have Matt's endorsements and cash, but was avoiding the "insider game" for as long as possible. He didn't diss Matt although Todd tried to get him to. Said everybody all over the state recognizes him now and calls him "Jeff." Todd asked why he wasn't running Indy, and he said the battle wasn't between the two parties it was between the insiders and the outsiders of both parties. Todd obviously loves the video and played most of the good stuff, the Kristi mannequin, the nuke, the rifle and rubber chicken, the horse's ass. Jeff was cool and Todd respectful. Told Barth to be safe on the campaign trail. According to Barth, He's outgunned $400k to $60k. And of course, Kristi's pockets will be a bottomless pit of cash out the wazoo (last sentence mine, not Barth's... although I bet both Jeff and Matt are thinking something similar.)

  34. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.06.04

    Thanks for that summary, Bill! Now let's hope some South Dakotans were watching this morning.

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