Bachmann patrons privately profiting from public pesos
Dump Bachmann has been doing some great work on Michele Bachmann's connections to wealthy developers who support the use of eminent domain, accepting their big-dollar campaign contributions even while she protests against the practice on her website.
One of these wealthy contributors is David Frauenshuh, who (along with his wife) has given nearly $9,000 to Bachmann's campaign. A recent post at MN Publius linked to a post last year from Three Way News, which gives some background on Frauenshuh Companies' shady business deals with Norm Coleman and the city of St. Paul:
It looks like a major campaign contributor made $30 million in 5 years on a real estate deal involving Norm Coleman and rewarded him with $50,000 in campaign contributions.
This looks a lot like Duke Cunnigham in reverse. Duke -- not Richie's nearly mute lost brother, by the way -- sold his home above market value, then oversaw contracts that benefited the purchaser. Smilin' Norm, as mayor, sold commercial property below market value, then received large campaign contributions from the purchaser. Republicans violate ethics rules both coming and going.
Basically, the City of St. Paul paid over $100 million to build the Lawson Software building downtown, then sold the property to Frauenshuh Companies just three years later for $54.5 million. In 2005, Frauenshuh sold the property to a Dallas developer for a $30 million profit, and has been rewarding then-mayor, current U.S. Senator Norm Coleman with campaign contributions ever since.
Dump Bachmann also commented on this story when it broke, examining Bachmann's connections to Norm Coleman, pointing out Coleman's support for Bachmann in her first campaign for the state Senate and speculating on why she received a key endorsement from the St. Paul Chamber of Commerce:
I've always wondered why the St Paul Chamber of Commerce would endorse Bachmann in 2002, while the Greater Stillwater Chamber stayed out of the race. My guess: Norm Coleman helped with that one.
Can we expect the same type of antics (i.e., rewarding campaign contributors with sweetheart deals) from Bachmann if she is elected to Congress?