Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) has been caught continuing to disburse tens of thousands of dollars to her daughter, who runs Waters’ lucrative slate mailer operation.
Waters’ campaign is reportedly religiously paying off the debts to her daughter while leaving all other campaign debts untouched.
The payments continue
Federal Election Commission filings show that Waters’ campaign committee paid $56,000 to Karen Waters in the third quarter, as per the most recent filings.
This news comes after it was discovered that Waters’ campaign was $183,000 in debt to Karen Waters by the end of 2018.
The payments from the campaign committee brought the outstanding debt to Karen Waters down to $52,000 as of this month.
According to the Washington Free Beacon, “Waters currently maintains nearly $100,000 in campaign debt, more than half of which is marked toward her daughter. The campaign has $600,000 cash on hand.”
Slate mailers controversy
Waters has faced criticism for years over her decision to pay her daughter to run a slate mailer operation, a controversial practice in its own right.
Melanie Sloan, a former federal prosecutor and head of the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) said in 2010 that “It is astonishing that politicians can cash in on their positions by selling their endorsements,” referring to the slate mailer campaign.
According to the Washington Times, Waters’ slate mailers allow her to collect money from California candidates and political causes to include their names as her personal picks on a sample ballot.
Sloan went on to criticize Waters’ decision to pay daughter Karen to run the campaign, saying: “This further demonstrates that Rep. Waters abuses her position for the financial benefit of family members.”
Waters’ slate mailer scheme has run unchecked since then, despite the obvious appearance of impropriety.
The Free Beacon reports that Maxine Waters made more than $400,000 from the mailers during the midterm elections alone. It’s quite a lucrative set-up for the Waters family, as they’ve undoubtedly pulled in a pretty penny during her long political career.