Editor, Manteca Bulletin,
The news article published earlier this week and which identified the level of contributions received by Manteca candidates was rather astonishing; I would tend to agree that $175,931 in donations shatters the record.
I was curious to know where the contributions originated so I decided to dig a little deeper to determine the source of the contributions and the particular candidate. While the news article identified the top ten fundraising candidates it did not break down the source of those contributions. Consequently, to fully understand why the record was shattered, I believe it is important to understand the nature of the contributions.
Once we understand the nature of the contributions, it is then easy to see the relationship of those contributions to the candidate. At this point it is important that I note the information I reviewed is available to anyone by simply making a request to the Manteca City Clerk’s office at city hall; it is public information. Additionally, while my focus is on the mayoral election, the same information is readily available for the Council candidates as well.
Mr. DeBrum received contributions through October 20 totaling $59,261. During the same period Mr. Cantu’s campaign received $30,355. While both sums represent a great deal of money, the significance of their true value is not readily evident unless one looks behind the curtain.
In the case of Mr. DeBrum’s contributions, the lion’s share (83 percent) over the ten month period were from new home land developers, new home builders, home builder contractors, suppliers and service companies, the building industry unions, and special interest groups. Those same contributors represented 96 percent of the contributions received during the reporting period between September 23 and October 20.
In the other case, the Cantu campaign received contributions during the same ten-month period from residents, friends, family, and the candidate himself.
The numbers speak for themselves. I think it is time to review loyalties and priorities.