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Agricultural News

Follow the Money- Latest Contribution and Spending Numbers on State Question 777 Reported to Ethics Commission

Tue, 01 Nov 2016 05:48:15 CDT

Follow the Money- Latest Contribution and Spending Numbers on State Question 777 Reported to Ethics Commission The latest numbers are now out from the Oklahoma Ethics Commission- as of last night- and while they tell some of the story of who is spending what on State Question 777- the numbers don't reflect any money transferred in after October first and any media buys placed and paid for after October first.

You can pretty well tell where the pro side group- Oklahoma Farmers Care- is on raising money- and you have a real sense of the money behind the Oklahoma Food, Farm and Family- but the unknown is how many dollars is HSUS really dumping into the state- as the lion's share of the money they have earmarked for Oklahoma is coming after the October first cutoff for these Ethics Commission numbers.

For Oklahoma Farmers Care- the pro side has now hit the million dollar mark collectively for the year- and when you add the $355,000 raised in 2015- the total raised to promote the state question has hit $1.36 million.

Biggest contributors include the Oklahoma Farm Bureau Insurance Company with a total contribution of $400,000 this year and Oklahoma Farm Bureau adding $71,412 in 2015. The Oklahoma Pork Council contributed $115,777 in 2015 and another $166,000 in 2016. Numerous County Farm Bureaus have also given several thousand dollars each in an effort to secure a YES vote.

The latest quarterly report shows $598,204 raised in the quarter ending September 30th, with $491,454 available to spend as of October first. The agency that the group is utilizing is out of Iowa- Victory Enterprises- and money spent in the third quarter included $589,880 in media buys (mostly TV).

The Oklahoma Food, Farm and Family group is almost totally funded by Oklahoma Rising, Inc- in fact the only financial contributor to Oklahoma Food, Farm and Family in the latest quarter is Oklahoma Rising, Inc- a total of $526,454 this quarter and a total for the year of $702,485.

This group bought $519,985 worth of TV advertising to oppose 777 before the September 30th deadline- using an agency in Maryland- Joe Trippi and Associates.

The third group registered with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission that is connected with SQ777 is the Oklahoma Stewardship Council- the group that has Drew Edmondson as its Executive Director. We won't know how many dollars this group really has and really is spending on this campaign as they appear to have waited until after October first to get really large amounts of money in from their primary donor- HSUS- and show no major media buys before the September 30th cutoff- if you have been watching any TV since early October- you know the Oklahoma Stewardship Council and the other two are spending as hard and as fast as they can- so it's easy to imagine that they will spend as much if not more than the other two groups.

We know from the third quarter that their major donor is HSUS- providing $136,500 in the current period and $177,068 for the year to date. They have several individuals that have given- but only one ranch lady identifying as a person connected to farming or ranching- that lady from Vinita gave $100. I counted 60 people listing themselves as farmers or ranchers in the contributions made to Oklahoma Farmers Care- none to Oklahoma Food, Farm and Family in the latest third quarter reports. The Stewardship Council collected $181,457 in the quarter ending September 30th.

One other note on the opposition to State Question 777- it may only be coincidence- but it appears they are using the same ad agency for their media- Joe Trippi in Maryland. The Stewardship Council has not made any significant ad buys before September 30th- only social media- but that was though the group in Maryland- the same group used by Oklahoma Food, Farm and Family.

Click here for the search site at the Oklahoma Ethics Commission website where you can see and read more.

To learn more about State Question 777- click here for our resource page on Right to Farm.



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