Secretary of State Mark Martin’s chief spokesman Alex Reed is at the center of controversy for his roles in Republican Party politics, the Pulaski County Election Commission, and the Ann Clemmer for Congress campaign, which disclosed Reed made thousands of dollars of “unauthorized disbursements” to himself.
Reed resigned from the Pulaski County Election Commission on Friday shortly after the Blue Hog Report blog revealed that he was in violation of state law for serving on the commission and as campaign treasurer for Clemmer, who is a Republican candidate for U.S. Congress in the Second District.
Blue Hog noted that “a person serving on the county board shall not participate in the campaign of a candidate listed on that county’s ballot,” according to state law.
Reed was appointed to the post after election commissioner Phil Wyrick resigned to run for county judge this year. Reed, a member of the Pulaski County Republican Committee, replaced Wyrick despite Reed’s role in the office of Secretary of State, which oversees the state’s election process.
Late Friday, Pulaski County Republican Committee chairwoman Vickie Arellanes accepted Reed’s resignation from the election commission “upon learning of his role as Treasurer of a campaign appearing on the Pulaski County ballot.”
She also issued a statement saying, “The committee was unaware of Mr. Reed’s involvement in the campaign when he ran for the position of Election Commissioner and he was elected in good faith that he would adhere to the restrictions and qualifications of his position. Effective today, Mr. Reed no longer represents the Pulaski County Republican Committee.”
CLEMMER FOR CONGRESS, UNAUTHORIZED DISBURSEMENTS
Reed’s resignation also led to further disclosure of his role in the Ann Clemmer for Congress campaign – a role that suggests possible criminal activity and likely FEC investigation.
Clemmer is facing Republican primary opponents French Hill and Col. Conrad Reynolds in a May 20 election for the Second District Congressional GOP nomination.
In her FEC report in which Roland Reed (aka Alex Reed) is listed as treasurer, there are a series of 23 transactions labeled as “unauthorized disbursements” made to Reed that total $9,524.21 during the quarterly reporting period that ended March 31, 2014.
The Clemmer campaign also lists a $20,007.83 “loan” not made or guaranteed by the candidate. On an schedule tied to the report, Reed is identified as the lender of the $20,007.83 and an accompanying note states, “repayment of unauthorized disbursements – paid off on 4/15/14.
Throughout the FEC report, the total of $9,524.21 in “unauthorized disbursements” to Reed are listed. Reed is also the recipient of $2,622.56 in proper reimbursements for items such as stationary and postage.
Clemmer and Reed did not respond to requests for further clarification, but Clemmer did issue a statement Friday evening related to the controversy. It suggests that Reed is no longer affiliated with her campaign.
“During the preparation of our latest FEC report, we discovered that there were unauthorized disbursements. We took immediate corrective action, engaging counsel to help us take the proper steps and immediately removed our volunteer treasurer from the bank account. All funds have been returned and we are currently in the process of filing the necessary paperwork with the FEC to name a new campaign treasurer. The individual who made the unauthorized disbursements is no longer affiliated with the campaign committee. I want to take full responsibility for the issues on our latest FEC report,” Clemmer said.
Talk Business will update this story as more information becomes available.