FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 9, 2013
Moms for Labeling Serves Attorney General With Legal Notice About 522 Lawsuit
Also Provide A.G. Bob Ferguson New Evidence of GMA's Violations From California
(Seattle) - Moms for Labeling, a group of moms supporting Initiative 522, issued a 10-day legal notice to Attorney General Bob Ferguson late Tuesday. The group informed him that he has only 10 more days to bring suit against the No on 522 Campaign for its campaign violations before Moms for Labeling will file its own citizen enforcement action.
As part of the 10-day letter, Moms for Labeling also provided the A.G. with new evidence supporting their claim that the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) and the No on 522 campaign have violated the campaign finance laws. Newly released GMA tax filings show that the GMA also received contributions from member companies that it funneled to the anti-labeling No on Prop 37 campaign in California last year.
The tax returns show that in 2012, the GMA collected "special project funds" of $22 million from GMA members and turned them over to the No on Prop 37 campaign, the same practice that Moms for Labeling alleges happened this year. Only in last year's campaign, the identities of the member-company donors were publicly disclosed, whereas this year they are being concealed. This supports the Moms' claims that No on 522 has illegally disclosed the GMA as its largest donor, when in fact the GMA has been laundering political contributions from its members.
"The new evidence we delivered to the Attorney General makes it even more clear that No on 522 is illegally concealing its donors," Pam Johnson, co-chair of Moms for Labeling. "Attorney General Bob Ferguson needs to take action to prevent these out of state corporations from illegally stealing this election. It's time for the A.G. to defend Moms for Labeling and the voters of Washington."
Last week, a Thurston County Superior Court held that Moms for Labeling's case against No 522 may have merit, but that Moms could not bring its suit until the A.G.'s notice period ended. The 55 day waiting period allows Moms for Labeling to bring their case on October 18.
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