Chicken-Fried News: Personal piggy bank? 

CFN_SMOKEY-1.jpg

There was a good reason behind Smokey Bear and his message, “Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires.”

People were actually causing fires in parklands and they needed to stop.

The same is true for the tougher new ethics rules passed down by Oklahoma Ethics Commission. No longer can state legislators use their campaign donations to purchase college football tickets, pay home mortgages, finance vacations to Florida or write a check to the local country club.

The new rules apply to elections held after Jan. 1, 2015.

According to NewsOK.com, compliance officers are contacting candidates and politicians after a problem is found on their campaign report. It’s a slap on the wrist this time but will come with a $1,000 fine per violation in the future.

Ashley Kemp, the commission’s executive director, told NewsOK.com, “The new rules provide clarity and guidance on how committees handle specific situations.”

The new rules beg us at Chicken-Fried News to ask: How did candidates and politicians think it was ethical to pay their bills and purchase tickets with campaign donations?

Rules exist for a reason and typically because people weren’t walking a straight line.

Had people followed the advice of the U.S. Forest Service and protected trees, Smokey would cease to exist.

Print Headline: Personal piggy bank?

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