Doing it the Hard Way

Blogger Nancy Oates recently raised some questions about my fundraising. I wrote her this open letter in response.

Nancy, I appreciate your concerns about my struggles with my campaign, but your worries are misplaced.  My campaign has almost completed our qualifying donation  campaign and will have our report in on time to the SBOE.  It is true that I took money from people other than Chapel Hill residents during my seed money campaign, which is allowed by state rules.  But what you did not mention is that even though I chould have accepted up to $280 from each of those donors up to $838, I only allowed folks outside of Chapel Hill to give me as much as people in Chapel Hill could give me.  So I only asked for $5 -$20 dollar donations from friends, families and colleagues who support my campaign for Chapel Hill Town Council.  Some of these folks were very excited about my campaign and gave me more than I asked for.  I appreciate their support but decided to support the VOE fund with their generosity.
Citizens at the forum were raising legitimate questions about who and how local elections are funded.  It is a conversation that is getting more and more attention on the state level also.  The fact that Jason Baker, Carl Schuler, and I took the harder road of collecting many small donations to help keep our campaigns inclusionary and protect local clean elections is a decision that I am proud of.  This is a quality you do not need or respect in a candidate.   That is fine.  We will just choose to disagree.   I feel I have plenty of support elsewhere.



I hardly think it's worth spending time worrying baout whether Nancy Oates is likely to support or even agree with Donna (not likely), but I appreciate Donna taking the time to respond to the challenge anyway. It's really disappointing that we are going to lose the voter-owned elections program just when are starting to really get to know it and start to understand what all the implications (good or bad) might be.  


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