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TPJ files ethics complaint against Perry

It’s a dirty job, but someone’s got to do it.

Texans for Public Justice, a nonprofit watchdog group, filed a complaint [Wednesday] urging the Texas Ethics Commission to require Gov. Rick Perry to provide detailed reports of campaign spending on living and entertainment expenditures related to the Governor’s Mansion.

TPJ alleges that Perry violated campaign disclosure laws by not itemizing how it spent more than $800,000 for such items as food, beverages and flowers. Instead of itemizing the spending, the campaign routinely reports lump sums as much as $63,000 as simply “Mansion Fund.” Since 2001, the campaign reported 145 “Mansion Fund” expenditures totaling more than $816,000, according to TPJ.

Seems straightforward enough, but there’s always room for the TEC to pull a Bill Ceverha maneuver and force the Lege to clean up after them. Never underestimate the possibility of shenanigans, that’s all I’m saying. A statement from the Bill White campaign is beneath the fold.

“Texans deserve specific answers, not vague statements, to the questions raised in the ethics complaint. Perry has already been caught funneling money through a non-profit, TexasOne, to pay for his swanky travel. Now reports indicate that he’s been hiding hundreds of thousands of dollars in expenses for his extravagant rental mansion, when he’s already charging taxpayers almost $10,000 a month!” said Katy Bacon, campaign spokesperson. “Career politician Rick Perry’s been in office for so long that he’s forgotten he’s supposed to be serving Texans, not himself. It’s time Perry come clean about the campaign contributions, taxpayer dollars and corporate cash he uses to fund his lavish lifestyle.”

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