Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Open Letter to Secretary of State Brian Kemp & Voters of Georgia from Darwin Carter, candidate for Agriculture Commissioner

Honorable Brian P. Kemp
Secretary of State
Georgia

Dear Mr. Secretary,

By way of this correspondence, I am writing you, and the voters of
Georgia, seeking your opinion as to whether or not by his words and
his actions my opponent, Gary Black, has disqualified himself as a
candidate for office pursuant to the Official Code of Georgia, Title 21,
Chapter 2, Section 5.

Let me be specific. It is my understanding based on the Official Code
of Georgia, that a candidate for Commissioner of Agriculture may be
disqualified if: (1) He is guilty of Moral Turpitude, (2) If he
commits fraud, and (3) If he steals or misappropriates public funds.

During the course of my state wide race for the post of Commissioner
of Agriculture, I have carefully reviewed much of the work and actions
of my opponent, Gary Black. By doing so, I believe that he may, in
fact, be guilty of all three of the above disqualifying factors.

As the long time president of the Georgia Agribusiness Council, (GAC)
a non-profit 501c6 corporation, he has had a responsibility to pay
taxes on political expenditures. He has paid none. This is not a
slight oversight. He has carried on this reckless behavior for
years. A one time error may be considered a mistake. An ongoing
pattern of deceit is usually considered "evasion" by the IRS.

And, I might add, tax evasion is often prosecuted by the Bureau on
charges of fraud, possibly a felony. Black's many months, actually
years, of political campaigning for public office was subsidized by his
non-compliant lobbying firm (Georgia Agribusiness Council). He
and his fellow Board of Directors have deliberately failed to pay
federal taxes on his political dalliance. I consider that a misuse
of public money (#3 of above). Not to pay taxes may well be fraud
(#2 of above), and one guilty of fraud is considered to be guilty of
Moral Turpitude (#1 of above).

Gary Black, as you well know, ran unsuccessfully for this same post in
2006. During this current race he was actively campaigning throughout
most of last year. His twitter posts, accessible to the public, make
it very clear that he was meeting and greeting voters and supporters all
the while he was on full salary with his lobbying firm, GAC. He did not
resign his position as President of GAC until sometime around May 1, of
this year. That leaves the previous 12 months in which he was a full
time candidate and a full time GAC employee drawing his
big 501c6 salary, an ethical violation and an IRS act of fraud.

501c6 corporations are required by the IRS to pay taxes on partisan
political expenditures. As previously noted, Black and his lobbying
firm have never done so. Interestingly, Black's Chairman of the
Board, of GAC, is David Skinner, who is also a full time state
employee. He serves as Executive Director of the Georgia Development
Authority. As president and Chairman, Black and Skinner apparently have
worked well together.

Mr. Secretary, it is my understanding that charges of disqualification
are to be brought to your direct attention. By this letter, I am doing
so. As previously noted, I am also making these charges available to
the voters of Georgia, so that they too, can weigh in on this serious
matter.

It is my further understanding that once these charges reach your
attention by authority of the Georgia Constitution you are obligated to
review and reach a decision on all I have presented here. You must
decide if the above charges are disqualifying for Mr. Black. Once
you have reached your decision, I can accept your findings and/or
if I disagree, I may then notify you of my desire to take the matter
to the Fulton County Superior Court for further review.

Sincerely,

Darwin Carter

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