Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Help Fine the Missing Mormon Money / Boycott Ken Garff Automotive

Public's Help Sought in Uncovering Mormon Church Prop 8 Money
Ken Garff Automotive Boycott to be Announced

Wednesday News Conference Set

SALT LAKE CITY, UT -- Fred Karger, founder of
Californians Against Hate will hold a news conference to ask the for the public's help in determining if there was significantly more money spent by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in its monumental effort to pass California’s Proposition 8 that has not been reported.

The News Conference will be held at 12:00 noon, Wednesday, February 11, 2009 at the Marriott Salt Lake Downtown Hotel – Deer Valley 2 Room, 75 South West Temple, Salt Lake City 84101 (801)531-0800

Karger filed a sworn complaint against the Mormon Church on November 13, 2008 with the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) contending that the Church had not filed the necessary campaign reports for all the money it spent on the successful Proposition 8. Up until Election Day November 4th, the Mormon Church had reported only spending $2078.00 on all of its involvement on Prop 8. Eight days later the FPPC announced that it would conduct a full investigation into those charges.

Don Eaton, a Mormon Church spokesman, told KGO Television (ABC - San Francisco) in November, “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints put zero money in this [the passage of Prop. 8].”

Another Church spokesman, Scott Trotter, said in November that the allegations are "false,” and the complaint has "many errors and misstatements." They said that the Church worked closely with its California political attorneys to comply with the law, and that it did not need to file anything further.

On January 20, 2009, the Mormon Church filed a Major Donor Report with the California Secretary of State's Office admitting that it spent nearly $190,000 on behalf of Prop 8. All of that spending came in the last month of the election with half of it on Election Day itself.

Karger is traveling over from California to seek the public's help in the investigation. A web site, email and phone line will be announced at the News Conference for people who have information on the Mormon Church's involvement over the summer months and into the fall. Those with information will be asked to call or email anonymous tips into his office. A special TIPS line will be set up for this purpose. Any information gathered will be passed along to California authorities.

Californians Against Hate will also announce a national boycott of all 40 of Ken Garff's Automotive Group owned car dealerships in 4 states. Katharine Garff, the wife CEO and Board Chairman Robert Garff contributed $100,000 to the Yes on 8 campaign.

We feel that this huge contribution to take away marriage rights in California by the Garff family warrants a full boycott. The contribution was given very late -- on October 29, 2008 -- and was disclosed in the recently released campaign report.

Californians Against Hate has called for three previous boycotts of major funders to Yes on Prop 8. The first was back on July 18, 2008 against the hotels owned by Doug Manchester (
Manchester Grand Hyatt and the Grand del Mar Hotels) both in San Diego, CA) who gave $125,000 to Yes on 8. The next boycott was called against Bolthouse Farms of Bakersfield, CA whose founder gave $100,000 to Prop 8, but was settled 3 weeks later. And the most recent boycott began on November 19, 2008 against A-1 Self Storage , whose owner Terry Caster and his family gave $693,000 to Yes on 8.