It's one thing if you list the sponsors of an event at the event. It's an entirely different thing to offer an advertising service in return for a political donation. The latter sounds to my uneducated ears like a commercial transaction. The company gives Councilman Reid $1,000 dollars, and Ken sends twelve advertising emails. Indeed, it sounds like a sale to me, and one that quite possibly should be subject to Loudoun's local sales tax. I wonder if Mr. Reid's friend Bob Wertz is going to do his job and collect the taxes owed?
Another interesting aspect of this fundraiser is the group co-hosting it, America's 9/11 Foundation, Inc, which sponsors the 9/11 ride through Town (and through much of the mid-Atlantic). I love the 9/11 ride. I think it's a fantastic event. But it is interesting that a non-profit charity would be co-sponsoring a politician's fundraiser. Indeed, such an action may very well put that non-profit status at risk!
Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. Contributions to political campaign funds or public statements of position (verbal or written) made on behalf of the organization in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office clearly violate the prohibition against political campaign activity. Violating this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes. - IRS.govIt will be interesting to see what happens on Saturday and afterwards. I believe that a candidate willing to peddle his influence for campaign donations is not one we should be sending to the Board of Supervisors. Our government isn't, and shouldn't be, for sale.