Walking around money

Officials in Ned Lamont’s U.S. Senate campaign said today they expect to file complaints with both federal and state authorities concerning $387,000 in “petty cash” U.S. Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman spent before the Democratic primary election.

George C. Jepsen, a former state Senate majority leader and Democratic state chairman who chairs Lamont’s campaign, said the complaints would allege violations of the federal campaign finance law and state labor laws.

$387,000 “is just unprecedented in its scope,” he said, referring to the money the Lamont campaign has characterized as a Lieberman “slush fund.”

“We’re not alleging that any Lieberman staffer knowingly broke the law, but who is naïve enough to think you can put north of $387,000 on the street in a very compacted period of time and not have some level of abuse?” Jepsen asked.

“Petty cash is supposed to be used for pizza for volunteers and paper clips,” he continued. “It’s not intended to fund a massive field operation. “This is a throwback to a generation ago when ‘street money’ was completely unregulated and widely abused, so at a minimum by law they’re supposed to keep detailed records of who was paid and how much, and make those records public.

“If you’re doing it right and by the book, so that it’s 100 percent legal, you would be cutting roughly 6,000 individual checks and keeping track of the money,” Jepsen added.

More here.

I was at the Lieberman rally when Lindsay took the picture she’s got posted here. I asked the kid on the left why he liked Joe Lieberman so much. He shrugged and looked away and said, without much conviction, “I just like him.” I didn’t push him any further, it felt too mean.

(Speaking of Lieberman, don’t miss this week’s cartoon.)