Vulnerable Pennsylvania Democrat Rep. Matt Cartwright has taken tens of thousands of dollars of campaign donations linked to Saudi Arabia as Democrat groups attack the previous employer of his Republican opponent for its work with the Middle Eastern country.
The House Majority PAC and the DCCC have been targeting Jim Bognet, the Republican nominee running against Cartwright in Pennsylvania’s Eighth Congressional District, for his previous work at the Glover Park Group. The Super PAC is attacking Bognet, claiming that he lobbied Congress to win immunity from lawsuits brought by victims of the 9/11 attack.
However, Cartwright has taken $57,000 during his time in Congress from people who are personally registered to lobby for Saudi Arabia, people who worked directly for a Saudi Arabian company, and people who worked at lobbying shops that were at one point registered to lobby on behalf of Saudi Arabia, in addition to corporate PACs for D.C. lobbying shops that were at one point registered to lobby on behalf of Saudi Arabia.
Cartwright took in three donations totaling $1,500 from Thomas Spulak, who works at King & Spalding and is personally registered to lobby for Saudi Arabia. Thomas was a registered lobbyist for Saudi Arabia at the exact same time Saudi was lobbying against the 9/11 victims bill, which is the same exact topic Democrat groups are looking to attack Bognet for in political ads.
Additionally, the congressman also took $250 from Andrew Johnson, who listed Saudi ARAMCO as his employer, the Saudi royal family-owned oil company.
Moreover, Cartwright took $32,250 from corporate PACs for D.C. lobbying shops that have been registered or currently are registered with FARA to do work on behalf of Saudi Arabia:
- Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP Civic Action Committee – $5,250
- BHFS-E PC PAC (Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck) – $500
- Deloitte Political Action Committee – $25,000
- King & Spalding Nonpartisan Committee for Good Government – $1,500
Furthermore, Cartwright has received numerous donations — exactly $23,000 — from people who work at lobbying shops that have been registered or currently are registered with FARA to do work on behalf of Saudi Arabia:
- Jose Borjon – Akin Gump – $250
- Charles Johnson – Akin Gump – $1,000
- Roger Murry – Akin Gump – $250
- Ed Pagano – Akin Gump – $1,250
- Scott Parven – Akin Gump – $1,500
- Chris Treanor – Akin Gump – $7,500
- Virgil Miller – Akin Gump – $750
- Karen Green – Akin Gump – $250
- Sean Darcy – Akin Gump – $500
- Louis Agnello – Akin Gump – $250
- Michael Barnard – Akin Gump – $250
- Brian Pomper – Akin Gump – $1,500
- Dianne Elderkin – Akin Gump – $1,000
- Kayla Brochu – Boston Consulting Group – $2,000
- Timothy Keating – Brownstein – $1,000
- Barry Rhoads – Cassidy & Associates – $500
- Jose Campos – Deloitte – $250
- Nat Bell – DLA Piper – $1,000
- Moses Mercado – Ogilvy – $2,000
Overall, Cartwright has taken in $57,000 from people and groups linked to the Middle Eastern country.
The attacks from the Democrat-aligned groups come as the race is heating up with less than two months left before the election. In fact, National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) Chairman Rick Scott (R-FL) recently said the Democrats would lie, cheat, and smear their opponent when they are losing.
Scott was referring to the eleventh-hour attack on Georgia Republican Senate nominee Herschel Walker, where a woman — who has remained anonymous — accused the candidate, who is vocally pro-life, of encouraging her in 2009 to abort their unborn child.
Currently, the race between Cartwright and Bognet is in a statistical tie, according to a poll that the Republican campaign released.
Of the 440 likely voter respondents in Pennsylvania’s Eighth Congressional District, which includes President Joe Biden’s hometown of Scranton, 47.7 percent say they back Bognet, while 47.5 percent support Cartwright. Even more so, the 0.2 percent margin between the candidates has been virtually unchanged from June, when Bognet garnered 45.7 percent of the response versus Cartwright’s 45.4 percent.