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KS: Candidate bows to pressure, reports finances after 9 week holdout

By   /   October 4, 2012  /   No Comments

Elliot Lahn

By Travis Perry │ Kansas Watchdog

OSAWATOMIE — In the fight for transparency in government and politics, it seems persistence actually can pay off.

For the last two months Elliot Lahn, a failed Republican candidate for the 15th Kansas House district, has dodged the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission and media phone calls inquiring as to the whereabouts of his campaign finance reports. The deadline to submit the reports before the August primaries was July 30.

As of this morning, Lahn was still the lone holdout from a field of 400 state House and Senate candidates. Carol Williams, executive director of the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission, said his defeat at the polls was immaterial.

“We do not see this, this is not common for someone to throw their hands up and walk away,” Williams said.

She added that if an official complaint was lodged against Lahn, it could result in him being charged with a class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a $2,500 fine.

Kansas Watchdog made several attempts to contact him this morning, and messages were left noting the possible charges, but Lahn continued to stonewall requests for comment. However, Williams said Lahn finally faxed in his forms shortly after being contacted by Kansas Watchdog.

While the submission erases the possibility of Lahn facing misdemeanor charges, he will still have to pay a $300 fine if he ever wants to run for public office again.

Related: Candidates fail to file finance reports; fines have reached their limits

Contact Travis Perry at travis@kansaswatchdog.org, or follow him on twitter at @kansaswatchdog.

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Travis Perry is an investigative reporter covering news and politics for Watchdog.org's Kansas bureau. Before joining the organization, Travis graduated cum laude from Washburn University and cut his teeth as news editor for the Osawatomie Graphic, where he received numerous awards from the Kansas Press Association.

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