Conveniently telling only part of the story to reach a faulty conclusion is sometimes worse than an outright lie. Monica McHugh's recent letter is an example of that.
Ms. McHugh chastises me for not returning $115,000 the Republican Party spent on my behalf in my first campaign when I returned to the legislature. What she doesn't tell you was that expenditure was made in 2016. I served the entire legislative session following the 2016 election as a member of the Republican caucus thus fulfilling any financial obligation that I may have had. It was at the midway point of the session after the 2018 election that I made the decision to leave the Republican Party.
Although Ms. McHugh mentions that I chose to return the contributions from the Jones and Jackson Republican Central Committees for the 2018 campaign, she doesn't mention that I also turned over $18,000 of funds that I had raised myself to the Republican Party of Iowa. I believe that I have gone above and beyond in any financial obligations I may have had resulting from my 2019 change in party affiliation.
Ms. McHugh is correct that I'm a strong supporter of campaign reform. I believe that campaigns are too long, too expensive, and too unpleasant and I've introduced legislation for reform in these areas. Unfortunately, legislative leadership prevented these bills from being given consideration and we continue to operate in a system that allows unlimited contributions. With the Republican Party spending $300,000 on TV ads alone for my opponent, I had no choice but to raise money for my campaign. Ms. McHugh's comment that I've received almost 40% of my contributions from New York, Washington DC, California, and Washington State is way off base. As of October 8, I have received over 1,000 individual contributions, with 76% coming from Iowa. In addition, over 73% of my financial support comes from within Iowa.
Ms. McHugh criticizes me for "continually" attacking my opponent's negative campaigning in a recent forum. My comments were actually brief and I don't regret making them. I think it's unfortunate that my opponent chose to authorize misleading TV ads and flyers that distort my record. Ms. McHugh seems to think placing footnotes on a flyer somehow makes the charges accurate. Once again, Ms. McHugh is conveniently not sharing the full story and I intend to provide voters with the true facts.
I'm tired of the attempts by my opponent's supporters to tear down my record of service to Jackson County and the State of Iowa. I think their time would be better spent in suggesting why people should support their candidate. In conclusion, I can't help but be amused by Ms. McHugh's level of outrage.
After all, not much over a year ago she was one of my big boosters. I just thought she'd like to know that I'm the same person I've always been continuing to fight for what's best for Jackson County and the people I'm proud to represent.