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Padded His Cash on Hand By Giving Himself a Quarter-Million Dollars in Loans In 2011, it was reported that Maldonado padded his cash on hand by giving himself a quarter-million dollars in loans. The Ventura County Star reported that he “reported cash on hand as of Sept. 30 of $603,769. But that total includes an on-again, off-again, on-again loan to himself of a quarter-million dollars. The money has been shuffled in and out of his campaign account to coincide with the reporting periods.” [Blog, Ventura County Star, 10/17/11] Local GOP Committee Fined Over Misuse of Maldonado Contributions In 2011, it was reported that the Monterey County Republican Party paid a $25,000 penalty for repeated state campaign finance law violations from January 2005 to December 2008. One of the violations consisted of taking contributions totaling $90,000 in 2008 from the Abel Maldonado for Senate committee and diverting those funds to five candidates. The $90,000 contributions exceeded a $30,200 limit on single-source donations. [Monterey County Herald, 10/11/11]

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California Republicans Threatened to Undo Extension of Maldonado Bill – New California Dream Act In 2011, it was reported that Republicans threatened a referendum campaign to undo the new California Dream Act, a logical expansion of Assembly Bill 540, which was co-authored by Maldonado in 2001. For the past decade, any individual, despite immigration status, who graduated from a California high school after three years of attendance qualified for the same in-state tuition offered to other California residents.
[Editorial, Sacramento Bee, 10/16/11]

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Claimed He Never Agreed Marijuana Dispensary Could Operate on his Property


In 2011, Maldonado said he never agreed that a marijuana dispensary could operate on his property. Maldonado was one of the owners of a building where a man wanted to open a medical marijuana collective. In October 2011, David Rosenthal submitted an application to the San Luis Obispo County Planning and Building Department for a permit to open a collective at 115 Cuyama Lane that would also include some holistic health services and classes. Rosenthal said he would continue talks with Tri-M Rental Group, but Maldonado, a partner in Tri-M Rental Group with his father and brother, said Rosenthal had never been authorized to use the property. He said his father, Abel Maldonado Sr., had declined the request because of concerns that the federal government could seize their property. “We don’t want to be in a position where we would lose an asset because of some tenant who didn’t follow the strict rules of the federal and state government,” Maldonado said. [San Luis Obispo, 11/29/11] Claimed He Believed Those with Terminal Illnesses Should Be Able to use Marijuana In 2011, Maldonado claimed that he believed those with terminal illnesses and chronic pain should be able to use marijuana, but opposed allowing David Rosenthal to operate a dispensary where ill patients could obtain medical cannabis. Rosenthal was a cancer patient who has served about 400 patients in the county through his collective, TerraFarma, in 2010. Had Mixed Voting Record on Marijuana Maldonado advocated for clarity on medical marijuana collectives in the law and had a mixed record on marijuana as a state legislator. As a state legislator he voted against a resolution to urge Congress to secure state’s rights to regulate medical cannabis, and against the 2004 bill that established the program for issuance of identification cards to patients qualified to use medical marijuana. He also voted against a resolution in 2008 that would have urged Congress to require federal agencies, including the Drug Enforcement Administration, to respect a state’s compassionate use laws regarding medical marijuana. He did, however, he did vote in favor of a bill to set up a research program for medical marijuana, and another one that would have established a demonstration hemp cultivation program in four counties (San Luis Obispo County was not one of them). [San Luis Obispo, 11/29/11] Denied Any Deal to Rent Building for Local Marijuana Dispensary In 2011, it was reported that Brandon Gesicki, of Maldonado’s campaign, denied that Maldonado had ever agreed to renting to an individual, David Rosenthal, who sought to operate a Nipomo-based marijuana dispensary. Gesicki confirmed, however, that Maldonado did have an ownership interest in the Tri-M partnership, who was going to rent the building in question to Rosenthal as a marijuana facility. Gesicki stated that according to Maldonado, Tri-M had never approved the building’s use as a marijuana clinic, despite evidence to the contrary. [Nipomo News, 11/22/11]

Political Issues
Expected to Face a Tough Battle


In 2011, it was reported that Maldonado should expect a tough battle. He was named by the Republican National Congressional Committee as one of its “Young Guns,” part of a drive to elect conservatives to incumbent seats. [Independent, 10/20/11] Faced Several Republicans in June 2012 Republican Primary In 2011, it was reported that former lieutenant governor Abel Maldonado may have a tough battle in the primary against Capps. There were several potential Republican candidates and despite Maldonado’s political experience, he drew several challengers in the June 5 primary. [Independent, 10/20/11] Had Difficulty Finding Support from Large Groups of Conservatives In 2011, Maldonado was not invited to a debate sponsored by the Santa Barbara Tea Party – showing that he may have difficulty finding support from conservatives. Tom Watson who lost to Capps in 2010 and Christopher Mitchum spoke in front of about 40 people at the Santa Barbara Republican Club. The Independent reported, “Maldonado may find support from large groups of conservatives hard to come by.” [Independent, 10/20/11] Republican Matt Kokkonen Launched Campaign Against Maldonado to Expose His Record In 2011, Matt Kokkonen who lost to Capps in 2008 launched an email blast campaign against Maldonado to 80,000 24th District residents. His campaign to stop Maldonado email said he was looking for a “Truth Squad” of people to give time and money to expose the “real Abel Maldonado record.” He called Maldonado an “Obama Republican” who has “betrayed his party on a host of issues, from taxes and Proposition 8 to illegal immigration and gun rights.” [Independent, 10/20/11] Headline: “Republican looks to mobilize opposition against Abel Maldonado’s congressional run” In 2011, it was reported that San Luis Obispo financial planner Matt Kokkonen who ran against Capps in 2008 was on a mission to make sure Maldonado did not get into office. He said Maldonado “betrayed his party” on an array of different issues, including taxes and Proposition 8, as well as illegal immigration and gun rights. “If Abel is elected to Congress, we will be replacing Lois Capps with an Obama Republican…The Republican majority in the House will be subverted time and again by Abel as he votes to support Obama’s policies while sabotaging the conservative Republican agenda. Even a Republican president would be unable to count on Abel’s vote,” Kokkonen said. [Independent Voter Network, 11/8/11] Praised Court Decision that Deemed Washington State Top-Two Ballots Appropriate In 2012, it was reported that Maldonado praised the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals unanimous ruling that Washington state’s top-two ballots were designed in an appropriate way. Maldonado said, “This is a great day for individual voters’ right to speak for themselves without the interference of political parties. We look forward to California’s first Open Primary Top Two election this June.” [US Independent Voter Network, 1/19/12]


Called “Obama Republican” in Email By Matt Kokkonen Who Previously Lost to Capps In 2011, Maldonado faced a campaign in opposition to his Congressional bid. Matt Kokkonen, the Republican Party's 2008 candidate against Capps sent an email to over 80,000 voters in San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura counties, San Luis Obispo calling Maldonado a “Obama Republican.” The email said he betrayed his party on a host of issues, from taxes and Proposition 8 to illegal immigration and gun rights. Kokkonen pointed to Maldonado's decisive role in brokering the 2009 tax deal which resulted in the largest tax increase on Californians in history as a key reason why Maldonado is unacceptable to conservative voters in the 24th District. “If Abel is elected to Congress, we will be replacing Lois Capps with an Obama Republican…The Republican majority in the House will be subverted time and again by Abel as he votes to support Obama's policies while sabotaging the conservative Republican agenda. Even a Republican president would be unable to count on Abel's vote.”
[Press Release, 10/14/11]

Scheduled September 24 Fundraiser at Family’s Ranch In 2011, Maldonado scheduled a Sept. 24 fundraiser at his family’s Santa Maria ranch for his planned run against veteran Rep. Lois Capps. Capp’s District was less Democrat-heavy due to redistricting. [Blog, LA
Times, 9/6/11]

Headline: “D.C. Hearts Abel” In 2011, it was reported that Maldonado got a boost from the National Republicans in his Congressional beat. Maldonado appeared on the national list of “Republican Young Guns.” ”It’s more of a Beltway thing,” said Brandon Gesicki, Maldonado’s campaign manager. “What’s important is that he’s a serious candidate who looks forward to bringing his independent leadership to the 24th District.” [Santa Barbara
Independent, 8/25/11]

Tax Issues
Defended Vote to Increase Taxes in 2009 In 2011, Maldonado defended his vote to increase taxes. He said that although he received “so much heck” for breaking party ranks as a state senator in 2009 to vote for tax increases even though he signed a pledge not to do so. “I voted for California,” he told the crowd. “I didn’t vote for my political career.”
[Independent, 10/20/11]

Abel and Laura Maldonado Agreed to Detour Through IRS Appeals In December 2011, the United States Tax Court Issues Order Regarding Laura Maldonado and Abel Maldonado Et Al., vs. Commissioner Of Internal Revenue Case agreed to detour through IRS Appeals. “The first four cases were on the Court’s September 26, 2011 trial calendar for San Francisco, California, and arise from partially overlapping tax years. The second cluster of four were assigned to this division of the Court earlier in the summer. The parties moved jointly for continuances because they agreed a detour through IRS Appeals would likely be productive. Their recent report shows that it has been, and the cases can stay on the status-report track, so it is ORDERED that the parties file a joint status report on or before February 29, 2012 describing their


progress toward settlement or a narrowing of the issues to be tried.” [United States Tax Court, Docket No. 1510210, 12/4/11]

Tea Party Transportation Issues