August 7, 2008

Powers Needs To Come Clean

With allegations of wrongdoing flying from both sides in the race for the the Democratic nod in the 26th Congressional district, things are bound to get even more ugly. Niagara County Dem Chair Dan Rivera wants the District Attorney to investigate Jack Davis' petitions and Davis is accusing Jon Powers of never holding a real job.

As ugly as this race has become, what will be the downfall of Powers will be War Kids Relief. This is an non-profit organization that Powers started to shield Iraq’s youth from the influence of Islamic radicals. On the campaign trail, he has continuously touted his plan to raise as much as $7 million for Iraqi orphanages and youth centers.

War Kids Relief has raised between $150,000 and $250,000 over the course of its existence. Much of the money raised has been dedicated to paying Powers, including $77,000 over 18 months. Now, anyone who starts a non-profit and commits to making his cause successful is certainly entitled to pay himself accordingly, but you damn well better make sure that the overwhelming majority of the money raised is getting to its intended benefactors, in this case, children.

This is where Powers has a problem. The people of our community donated significant sums of money to fund this cause. What do those people have to show for donating their dollars? A few soccer balls and backpacks have made their way to Iraq. That's disgraceful. Powers has since found it quite easy to play the blame game for his inability to make War Kids Relief successful, even blaming Congress for not funding the initiative, but he has not publicly addressed why the bulk of the money has not made it to the children. He needs to.

You cannot raise money under that guise of benefiting children then pocket the money. What's the difference between that and walking door-to-door for Juvenile Diabetes then taking the money to pay your own "salary"? None.

Powers needs to come clean on this and come clean now, otherwise he is finished. There can be no greater political sin than using the premise of helping children to line your own pockets.


Anonymous said...

Jon Powers' non-profit group reminds me of Jane Corwins sham of a Foundation.

Anonymous said...

Two things should happen.
1.) The IRS should be notified of possible wrong doing, given the status of non profit.
2.) He should at once pull out of the political race.
Is this the reason he wants to run for a congressional seat for? To send money overseas?

Anonymous said...

Hobbes this is all old news, lets chat about NCCC raising salaries again and again and again, what a joke. But Ross still calls it niagara county's jew or i mean jem, Wheatfield is trying to cut it spending, but NCCC its still 1960 to them.

Anonymous said...

Good to see you back, Hobbes. Who's been writing the blog for the past week that you've been out?

Anonymous said...

Two years ago I road with Judge Drury on a float in the Oatka Festival parade as part of Drury’s campaign for State Supreme Court.
The float consisted of a flat bed trailer hitched to an old tractor. The judge was perched in his wheelchair atop the flatbed amid several other Democratic candidates for various offices in the district. Jack Davis, then in the middle of his second campaign for U.S. Congress, was immediately behind our float in a highly polished vintage Excalibur. He had a microphone attached to a P.A. system through which he spoke to the parade watchers who were lined four deep on each side of the street. It was reminscient of Jake and Ellwood in the Blues Brothers. After the parade, the tractor was pulling us back toward the starting line along hilly country roads which carved through endless rows of corn in the middle of nowhere—ahem, I mean, in the middle of a very rural area. Naturally, the tractor died, the sky grew dark and it began to pour. We were still about a mile from shelter. We decided to “hoof it”, and as I was pushing the judge up a rather steep hill (which was followed by an even more treacherous downhill) Jack Davis drove right by us in his Excalibur. He beeped, he waved, he chuckled to himself and then he kept right on going. Nice guy

Pete M said...

Jane Corwin doesn't go around saying she's raising money for kids then put it in her pocket like Powers does.

Anonymous said...

I think we can all come to the conclusion that this massive in-fighting between Powers and Davis benefits one person-Chris Lee, our next Congressman.

Anonymous said...

The GOP and the DEMs are working togather - life is good.

Anonymous said...

Go Chris Lee!

Anonymous said...

Here's the best part: Dan Rivera turned his back on Jack Davis and endorsed the guy paying himself from his charity while doing absolutely nothing for these kids. Jack Davis should have the opportunity to get spanked by Chris Lee.

Anonymous said...

Today, Jon Powers released his trade policy. He announced this during a speech to the UAW in Lockport, where he received that union’s endorsement:

• The Free Trade Failure – Free Trade is failing our working families in America. Despite millions of jobs being sent overseas, Congress continues to pass so-called Free Trade agreements that are destroying our middle class. The American worker can compete with any worker in the world; we just need the playing field to be level. It is time that our trade deals start putting America first. My platform on trade is simple:

First, we must start to enforce labor and environmental standards in trade agreements;

Second, if that does not level the playing field, we must renegotiate the standards to make the trade agreements fair to the American worker;

Third, if we cannot renegotiate the standards, we must rescind the trade agreement and start from scratch with a new deal that is better for the American worker.

• China – Our trade deficit with China is currently $201 Billion. China’s continued currency manipulation is causing even greater trade imbalances and the worker rights violations currently taking place are egregious. In order to deal with China, the first step is to stop the currency manipulation and human rights violations. In order to do so, I support the following:

The Ryan-Hunter China Currency Act – This places a tariff on Chinese goods if the Chinese government fails to revalue its currency in a timely fashion.

Diplomacy which brings China in full compliance with international standards for worker safety and labor standards.

• No to fast-track trade deals or legislation
Congress must have more discretion than a simple yes or no vote on trade deals, especially when it comes to labor and environmental standards.

• Accountability on Trade Deals.
I will support legislation for an at-large ambassador level position whose only function is to monitor and seek enforcement of trade agreements.

• Country of Origin Labeling.
Given the repeated safety violations coming out of countries like China, knowing the origin of our food is more important than ever.

I will stand up to Washington lobbyists and demand that consumers are given the information they are entitled to so they can make safe choices for their families.

• Increased Screening of Food Imported into the United States
Americans also deserve to know that their food is safe. As the danger to America’s food supply is clearly increasing, the FDA plans to close more than half the laboratories that test food safety and let foreign companies monitor themselves. Currently, the FDA only has inspectors at 1/3 of U.S. Ports even though food can come into any port.

I will fix this by only allowing food to be imported to ports with inspectors and require all safety testing be done either by the government or trusted independent labs.

Anonymous said...

Who said anything about his policies? The issue is whether Powers has the ability, knowledge and maturity to accomplish his promises. His track record is not great.

Anonymous said...

When are they going to parade out the suckers that contributed to this pyramid scheme. I want to hear about the kid that sold lemonade for a week to contribute to Jon pocket book.


Anonymous said...

Stealing from not just kids, kids living in a war zone...come on!

Anonymous said...

A good rule of thumb - make sure that you settle up our past due accounts before you seek public office - that right I'm talking about you.

Anonymous said...

I am absolutely dumbfounded by the Jon Powers thought process that it is OK to pay yourself a SIGNIFICANT salary form this "charitable" operation. He was also paying himself from his campaign money.I would bet he has disappointed a lot of supporters. Who will now donate to his cause? His lifestyle has been funded by the very people that donated. Which begs the question, what have these people funded? What restaurants did he eat at? What clothes did he buy? What kind of car does he drive?