No “mini-reporting” for Councilor Jeanne Stewart

stewartClark County Councilor Jeanne Stewart is backing away from the restriction—though not the sentiment—of running a campaign on a shoestring budget.

When Stewart announced her candidacy for Clark County chair, she told me she was planning to file with “mini-reporting” through the Public Disclosure Commission. Mini-reporting would have limited Stewart to raising and spending no more than $5,000 on her entire campaign. Stewart said she wanted to set herself apart in this day and age of massive campaign spending. She doesn’t want to buy votes. She wants to earn them.

It sounds noble on paper, but it had me scratching my head. Apparently I wasn’t the only one. After receiving advice from friends and colleagues, Stewart said she ended up filing with full reporting, which means she can raise and spend as much as she wants.

“People have advised me that it’s unnecessary leaving yourself vulnerable to anyone that’s got more money,” she said.

That doesn’t mean she’s going to run an expensive show, Stewart said. She can still set donation limits on her website and stop raising money at a certain point, but filing with full reporting won’t cut her fundraising off at the knees before it’s even begun.

“Don’t make it clear to your opponents that you’re vulnerable,” she said.

For reference, Councilor Tom Mielke has raised $21,960 so far. Councilor David Madore is not reporting any money raised, but remember, this is the guy that put $314,257.41 of his own money into the 2012 campaign, out of a total of $331,897.08. This is likely the calm before the storm.

Former County Commissioner Marc Boldt, meanwhile, has raised $2,300. The PDC is not yet showing any campaign filings from Mike Dalesandro, a Battle Ground councilman.

Kaitlin Gillespie

Kaitlin Gillespie

I'm the education reporter at The Columbian. Get in touch at or 360-735-4517.

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