PAY-TO-PLAY: Oklahoma State Senate Candidate Ally Seifried’s Campaign is Connected to Major Player in Charter School Scandal
Oklahoma Republican state senate candidate Ally Seifried is paying Campaign Advocacy Management Professionals (CAMP), whose founding partner is the disgraced consultant Fount Holland, to run her campaign.
Seifried has paid tens of thousands of dollars to CAMP for services such as strategic consulting, printing, graphic design, polling, and campaign finance compliance. It is clear from her candidate committee contributions and expenditures report filed by the Oklahoma Ethics Commission that CAMP is intimately involved with the day-to-day operations of her campaign.
Holland is the face of CAMP, and he has deep ties to the embattled Epic Charter School network. Epic has been embroiled in scandal for allegedly funneling taxpayer dollars into their coffers and working to destroy a whistleblower in the Senate who was a vocal opponent of the corruption.
Epic has been accused of funneling taxpayer money into their coffers through the use of a variety of different fronts to hide the payments. Epic co-founders Ben Harris and David Chaney have been hit with racketeering charges for allegedly using credit cards with school funds to fund personal expenses as well as political contributions among other charges. CAMP did Epic’s bidding to destroy the career of former Sen. Ron Sharp, who was their most prominent opponent in the state senate.
According to the criminal complaint filed by the State of Oklahoma against Harris and Cheney, Holland’s CAMP took $20,000 to slam Sharp and dubiously paint him falsely as the “most liberal Republican senator in Oklahoma.”
Epic was forced to change their name to avoid fallout from their scandals and issue Sharp a $600,000 settlement for their actions to damage his reputation and stifle his free speech rights.
“On behalf of the school, I wanted to apologize to him for what he went through,” Epic Charter School Board President Paul Campbell said.
Additionally, Epic School Board is facing probationary measures after a recent investigation found systemic corruption within its organization, including exorbitant bonuses for staffers and inaccurate truancy records. Epic is shuffling its leadership and removing staffers in an attempt to clean up its act. Still, Holland remains lurking in the shadows looking for corrupt puppets to do his bidding in the legislature.
Oklahoma’s former state auditor and GOP chairman Gary Jones has filed an ethics complaint against Holland as well as cronies Harris and Cheney. Jones claims that Holland is part of a RINO-led movement to dismantle proper oversight from the legislature so the likes of Holland can soak up dark money without the public being notified.
“The Legislature has gutted ethics,” Jones said. “I’m ashamed to say they’re Republicans — or people who claim to be Republicans.”
“Folks, the work has been done,” Jones said “The light has been shined on this — it’s no longer dark money. We’re asking for the Ethics Commission to do an immediate investigation. We’re asking for law enforcement to look for criminal prosecution. We’re in the process of working with lawyers to file civil (suits).”
Holland’s connections to Epic are far from the only scandal that has tarnished his record. He was dropped by several Super PACs after being charged with illegally taking dark money to influence a political campaign in 2016.
An exposé of Epic’s pay-to-play scheme involving Holland can be seen here from Red River TV:
By getting in bed with Holland and CAMP, Seifried has indicated that she will perpetuate the corrupt dealings that have tarnished the important Charter School industry within Oklahoma. Seifried is the America Last choice for state senator in District 2.