Campaign 2010

Apr 16, 2014

Evan Jenkins Takes Campaign Cash from Paul Ryan – Does He Support His Reckless Budget?

New campaign finance reports filed with the Federal Election Commission show that Evan Jenkins has accepted thousands of dollars from Congressman Paul Ryan  – the architect of the reckless Budget that raises taxes on West Virginia middle class families, ends the Medicare guarantee for seniors and makes it harder for miners to receive black lung benefits.

Now West Virginians want to know: after accepting Paul Ryan’s campaign cash is there any doubt Evan Jenkins would support Paul Ryan’s budget in Congress?

“Add Congressman Paul Ryan to the long list of shady out-of-state interests who are pulling Evan Jenkins’ puppet strings,” said David Bergstein of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “While Evan Jenkins refuses to answer reporters’ questions about where he stands on the budget, West Virginians deserve to know that Jenkins would vote in lockstep with his new benefactor to end the Medicare guarantee for seniors, raise taxes on working families and make it harder for miners to receive black lung benefits – all to give bigger tax breaks to billionaires and corporations that ship our jobs overseas. Jenkins has always put himself and his own political ambitions over West Virginia values, which is just another reason West Virginians can’t trust Jenkins in Congress.”

This isn’t the first time that Evan Jenkins has fueled his political ambitions with questionable donations: Jenkins has previously accepted contributions from Massey Coal and Don Blankenship, who were responsible for one of the worst mining disasters in West Virginia’s history.  

BACKGROUND:

Jenkins Took $5,000 from Paul Ryan’s PAC. In 2014, Evan Jenkins took $5,000 from Prosperity Action, the political action committee of Congressman Paul Ryan. [Jenkins Q1 2014 FEC Report, Center for Responsive Politics, accessed 4/16/14]

Evan Jenkins Accepted Contributions from Massey Coal. In 1997, A.T. Massey Coal Co. contributed $1,000 to West Virginians for a Secure Future, a PAC founded by Jenkins. [Charleston Gazette, 9/25/97]

Evan Jenkins Accepted Contributions from Massey Executives Including Don Blankenship. In 2000, Jenkins received $38,700 from coal interests, including $11,550 from Massey Energy executives. The contributions accounted for 12 percent of all donations to his campaign. [West Virginia People’s Election Reform Coalition report, accessed 2/07/14] These donations included $1,000 from Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship. [National Institute On Money In State Politics, 1/22/08; Associated Press, 5/02/10]

Massey Coal, Led By Blankenship, Responsible for Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster. In 2010, a coal dust explosion at the Massey Energy-owned and operated Upper Big Branch Mine killed 29 miners. The Mine Safety and Health Administration found that the company’s flagrant safety violations caused the accident. [MSHA, 12/06/11]