Republican Dino Rossi has started his re-match campaign against Democrat Christine Gregoire for Washington State Governor in 2008. But he is hiding it behind a 501(c)(4) he has formed so that he can conceal the names and amounts of contributions supporting his efforts.
The Rossi for Governor campaign website is now not just promoting Rossi’s book by Forward Books, LLC but also Rossi’s latest effort to promote himself. It is called the Forward Washington Foundation. The Foundation claims to be “a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to increasing public awareness of issues affecting the future of Washington state, its citizens and its economy.”
The funny thing is that the Home Page looks like a campaign website with a picture of of the Washington State Capitol and a big headline saying “A Message from Dino Rossi” and his signature at the bottom of the page.
Clicking on the About Us page you come up with a picture of none other than Dino Rossi who quickly introduces himself by saying he “is the President of the Forward Washington Foundation.” The next sentence -” Dino was the Republican gubernatorial candidate in Washington’s 2004 election,” You would think that if he was trying to head up a nonpartisan organization he would have left out the word “Republican.”
The About Us page also tells us that former legislator Dan McDonald is the only other Board Member. No mention is made that he is also a Republican. Dan McDonald doesn’t rate a picture or even an office like VP. He is just a Board Member. No other Board members are mentioned.
But guess what is the background and experience of the Campaign Manager Executive Director of Forward Washington. She was “the Assistant Campaign Manager for Mike McGavick’s 2006 U.S.Senate campaign and previously worked on Dino Rossi’s 2004 gubernatorial campaign.”
Rossi’s The Foundation’s campaign platform mission according to a press release issued on Dec. 20, 2006 is “focused on state-level issues such as improving the business climate-especially for small and medium-sized businesses, responsible state budgeting, accountability in state government and protecting the poor and the vulnerable. “
Any guesses as to who might be funding this new Foundation promoting Rossi for Governor? You probably need to look no further than Rossi’s Public Disclosure Commission reports when he ran for Governor.