Congressional District 5 candidate Roy Cho took a shot at his competition today when he condemned a franked mass mailing campaign by Republican incumbent Scott Garrett (R-5) last week.
The Cho campaign, which faces the challenge of unseating the 11 year incumbent in the November general, accused the conservative of a “politically motivated waste of taxpayer money” after Garrett campaign mailers — glossy sheets that featured information about his district office’s — appeared in mailboxes over the weekend.
They called the flyer redundant, as it contained “the exact same information that taxpayers can find for free on his official website,” and said the action runs contrary to the Republican’s “carefully crafted persona as a budget hawk.”
According to the latest-available House Disbursement Office records, Garrett’s office spent $30,142.08 on taxpayer-funded mail between January 1 and March 31, 2014.
“It’s disappointing that the congressman would vote against getting transportation money to his district, but he has no problem spending taxpayer money on a mailing like this,” said Derek Roseman, a Cho For Congress campaign spokesman, referring to recent a bipartisan bill to extend federal highway funding through May 2015 in the district.
Garrett voted against the legislation, which ultimately passed 367-55.
But the Cho campaign also questioned the timing of the mailing, which they said “bends the rules” for franking, which allows lawmakers to send postage without using a postage stamp. Federal law prevents legislators from sending franked mail fewer than 90 days before an election, and the Cho campaign noted that Garrett’s mailers arrived in mailboxes this weekend, which means they could have been sent out just as the August 6 deadline for their legality expired.
In a press release, the Cho campaign called on Garrett’s office to “immediately disclose how much taxpayer money was spent on the mailing.”
Garrett’s campaign did not immediately respond to calls for comment.