Politicians, Lobbyists Donate After Plane Crash Involving Arizona Senator's Father
Arizona State Senator, J.D. Mesnard's GoFundMe campaign in support of an airplane crash that paralyzed his father, has exceeded its $23,000 goal with almost half the total donated from fellow politicians, lobbyists and activists, including lawmakers from both parties, and several registered lobbyists at the state capitol, blurring lines between charitable donations and lobbyist influence.
The donations are legal, but Mesnard "should be aware of the optics of this," said John Pelissero, a senior scholar in government ethics at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University.
"It's very easy to infer that there is something expected by the lobbyists donating to this," Pelissero said. "Maybe they have legislation pending in the future that they would expect the senator to support because they stepped up and helped his family in a time of need."
John Pelissero, senior scholar, government ethics, quoted by Arizona Republic.