As you saw earlier Charles Lollar and I spoke today on the issues surrounding his PAC. We did not get a chance to talk about the salary issue from Monday, and Charles graciously sent the following via email which I post in its entirety:
I do understand the recent query into the salary payments made to me during my run for congress, and to some it may seem a bit questionable. However I assure you it is not. I went on sabbatical from my corporate job to run for a post with no financial help whatsoever. Just a commitment that my job would be there for me if I would complete this patriotic duty. It is no wonder that we have career politicians when we have a system that allows for the maintenance of such. My competitor was a 35 year congressman living and campaigning on the tax payers dime. At a salary of $185k a year plus benefits he is free to raise and save as much as he wants on the backs of tax payers like me and everyday citizens that want to change things have to either be independently wealthy or borrow large sums of money from themselves just to pay themselves back on the back end when the race concludes and very little is said when payments are made on the back end in the form of reimbursements. I have always been honest and upfront. I am not independently wealthy and with 4 daughters and other major expenses I knew what I was up against and what has to be done to be competitive. In addition as a Marine Corps Officer I cannot run for public office and keep my salary but a politician can. When are we going to start looking at this dysfunctional system for what it is and bring real change instead of attacking those that are sincere about changing the process. If we don't do something soon and I mean real soon the average "Joe - American citizen" will be completely ripped out of the process and then what will we have? A system that works for the career politician that can run for office and keep his post on the tax payers dime and God forbid a citizen wants to bring constitutional values and raise money by asking other citizens out of the kindness of their hearts to help support the efforts. You know in business we ask people to invest in our companies all the time and investors simply know their investments will include labor. Well you have my word I will ensure to be more clear in the future. I cannot be successful without the help of every single Marylander in this fight and I truly appreciate all gifts and contributions provided. In conclusion i did ask the Board of Elections if in fact it was legal for a campaign to provide compensation for the candidate prior to reception and found it 100% legal and above board. I will continue working hard for every single Marylander to change our dysfunctional state and system and truly understand if there are some who refuse to assist as a result of my position.