MailGate Update 5/5/14
What we know so far?
At least thirteen Democrat members of the W.Va. House Of Delegates have sent out thousands of letters and mailpieces to targeted likely voters at taxpayer expense. Many of the letters contain pictures of the incumbent politicians. All were printed, sorted, labeled and mailed at significant cost to taxpayers, with our tax dollars.
The current count is at least 64,037 pieces of mail sent, as of FOIAs of documents received through 4/30/14.
In past years, few delegates sent more than a hundred correspondences to constituents in a typical session. This year, some of the most highly endangered Democrats in the House suddenly sent out thousands each, filled with issue and political topics.
This list of massive postage bills also specifically included many incumbent Democrats who have competitive primaries this May.
It’s apparent from these records so far that the quantities sent out by each member closely match certain segments of the public very likely to vote in the 2014 Primary and General Elections.
We believe these most of these lists are obviously constructed to only include recipients who were chosen specifically as likely Democrat or Independent voters, rather than random constituents or Republicans.
These figures only represent mail sent at taxpayer expense through April 18, 2014.
Additional FOIA requests for related documents are currently on the desk of House Clerk Greg Gray, to determine the actual costs to the taxpayer of printing these special elections communications, labeling the envelopes with state workers, and who provided the letters and lists that incumbent Democrats used to make these mailings to predominantly Democrat likely voters in the 2014 elections.
We have, using the state’s voter file records, matched the voters who were mailed with their local voter registration data and propensity to vote from prior elections.
It appears so far, in the cases of Dels. Walker, Marcum, and Guthrie, the folks were mailed were 95% Democrat voters or higher……...all of whom had voted in 3 or more of the last four elections. That’s a clear definition of a political mailing to extremely likely voters. We are still analyzing hundreds of pages of similar records on the other Delegates.
Jeff Eldridge (D)-H22
4942 mail pieces
Tiffany Lawrence (D)-H65
6125 mail pieces
Justin Marcum (D)-H20
7346 mail pieces
Charlene Marshall (D)-H51
2392 mail pieces
Jim Morgan (D)-H16
8269 mail pieces
Ricky Moye (D)-H29
9070 mail pieces
Dale Stephens (D)-H17
2314 mail pieces
David Walker (D)-H33
8344 mail pieces
Jason Barrett (D)-H61
3966 mail pieces
Nancy Guthrie (D)-H36
4819 mail pieces
Richard Iaquinta & Ron Fragale (D)-H48 (shared)
2400 mail pieces
Don Perdue (D)-H19
4050 mail pieces
64,037 mail pieces
Sample Page of Guthrie mailing labels
Ricky Moye (4 different letters)
FOIA on Quantities of Mail sent before 4/13/14.