Meanwhile, New Democrats Are Cannibalizing Themselves

Which is a very good thing, actually. Consider this a happy news story interlude (boldface mine):

The nonpartisan political group No Labels, along with a number of affiliated super PACs, is facing a lawsuit from contractors who say they were stiffed for millions of dollars of work in the 2018 cycle, let go in favor of political strategists with ties to the group’s president, Nancy Jacobson — and her husband, Mark Penn.

In the complaint, which was filed in the Supreme Court of New York this week, strategists Matthew Kalmans and Sacha Samotin say their firm, Applecart, helped implement No Labels’s current strategy of creating PACs that can invest in primaries and general elections to boost centrist candidates; they seek $3.7 million in damages, saying money they were owed was shunted away from them, in breach of contract…

The 45-page complaint tells a story of political blunders that Applecart blames on Penn and that No Labels affiliates blame on Applecart. According to the complaint, it was Kalmans and Samotin, Republicans who identified as moderates, who presided over the group’s first political successes…

But Kalmans and Samotin claim that later electoral efforts were undone by Penn. In July 2017, according to the complaint, “Jacobson recommended, urged, and/or instructed Kalmans and Samotin to use several vendors indirectly in which a private equity firm owned by Penn had a stake, including SKDKnickerbocker, a television advertising firm, Targeted Victory, a digital advertising firm, and PMX Agency, a mailing house. Jacobson also urged Kalmans to omit a Penn-owned entity from a conflicts disclosure made to donors.”

…Davis defended that decision, saying the team that swept in to look at the Indiana results decided Applecart had committed “political malpractice” and “needed adult supervision.” Former senator Joseph I. Lieberman, a No Labels co-chair, said Applecart had looked promising but wilted under inspection.

They were charging us for things they had not even done,” Lieberman said.

Applecart was spending 50 percent or more of the overall costs in each race on non-voter contact expenses (much of which was paid directly to themselves),” White wrote in an email. “Applecart only won four of the races this cycle during their work with us.”

Any decent person should be rooting for injuries.

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that a political movement whose lodestar is being one step to the left of the GOP so they can raise tons of corporate dollars–a hefty percentage of which find their way into the consultants’ pockets–is just a massive scam (though it’s difficult to figure out who scammed whom).

If you decide to donate to candidates, remember this. There are some candidates who, given their strategy and their embrace of the conservative wing of the Democratic Party, are much more likely to send your donations to consultants like these, rather than spending the money usefully.

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