Topeka The Kansas Democratic Party on Wednesday filed an ethics complaint against state Rep. TerriLois Gregory, R-Baldwin City, saying she violated a state law that prohibits the use of public resources for political campaigning.
In a prepared statement Gregory admitted she made a mistake in requesting campaign contributions in a newsletter sent in a recent email from her state account. “I take full responsibility for my actions and apologize to my constituents,” Gregory said.
Kansas law prohibits state elected officials from using public funds, machinery, equipment, supplies or any governmental agency for campaign purposes.
“Rep. Gregory talks about her conservative principles, her desire to stop government waste and be a good steward of taxpayer dollars, apparently while sending out campaign solicitations using state resources,” said Kansas Democratic Party executive director Kenny Johnston.
“This type of behavior demonstrates either a total lapse in judgment or a serious misunderstanding of what it means to be a public servant. An elected Kansas official should know and do better,” Johnston said.
Gregory said she will work with the Kansas Governmental Ethics Commission “on this error.” She added, “I understand that state property must be respected and will ensure that this does not happen again.”
The email contains a July newsletter from Gregory that touches on several major state issues.
Under the heading, “How do we continue?” Gregory, in her first term, asked for campaign contributions for her 2012 re-election campaign. She asked for contributions ranging from $5 to $500 with a goal of raising $20,000 by Aug. 25 for her 2012.
“Unless you like more taxes, more debt and more regulation, I need to stay in office and hold strong a defensive fiscal line for Kansas,” she said. She includes instructions on who to make checks out to and where to send them.
The newsletter was sent from her state House email account.