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27 July 2010

Bill Simon vs. Karen Handel: Legitimate Complaint Or Sour Grapes?

Atlanta Journal-Constitution Political Insider Jim Galloway brings news today that Bill Simon, who runs the blog Political Vine, filed an ethics complaint against Republican gubernatorial candidate Karen Handel [Galloway, Jim (2010-7-27). Karen Handel hit with ethics complaint alleging $13k in illegal payments to staffers. Political Insider. Retrieved on 2010-7-27.].

The Handel campaign quickly responded to Simon's allegations of improprieties saying that Bill Simon is a "campaign vendor who has taken payments from Handel’s opponents."

That particular claim from Team Handel raised some suspicions over here, so I decided to do a little research on Bill Simon and his business activities.

Blogger Bill Simon operates the company, ID Builders, Inc. He's listed as both the CFO and Secretary on the company's registration with the Secretary of State's office [SOURCE: Secretary of State Corporations Division].

According to campaign finance disclosures filed with the State Ethics Commission, Simon's company, ID Builders, received payments from Republican gubernatorial candidates Eric Johnson, Ray McBerry and John Oxendine [SOURCE: State Ethics Commission].

Below is a breakdown of the payments made to Bill Simon's ID Builders:

Candidate
Date
Amount
John Oxendine
04/20/2009
$2,901.00
Eric Johnson
06/09/2009
$2,171.30
Eric Johnson
06/09/2009
$1,807.06
John Oxendine
02/04/2009
$1,519.56
John Oxendine
03/06/2009
$902.09
John Oxendine
08/05/2009
$1,053.00
Ray McBerry
07/30/2009
$842.70
Eric Johnson
01/11/2010
$211.79
Eric Johnson
04/09/2010
$13,045.70

So one has to wonder if Bill Simon's ethics complaint aganst Karen Handel is legitimate or if it's just sour grapes for Handel easily handling three of Bill Simon's clients.