University reprimands Dem for using tax-funded resources for campaign
A Democratic candidate for Congress has been reprimanded for using taxpayer resources for her political campaign.
Nancy Goroff, a chemistry professor at Stony Brook University in New York, was rebuked by Dean Nicole Sampson of the College of Arts and Sciences for using email lists that belong to the university for her campaign.
She solicted funds for her challenge to incumbent Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin, the Washington Free Beacon reported.
She wrote, “I ask that you donate through this link to help me share my message and launch this campaign.”
The fundraising email and the backlash occurred in July, but the Beacon recently obtained the email.
“Just 30 minutes after Goroff sent the fundraising plea, College of Arts and Sciences dean Nicole Sampson emailed the Democrat to rebuke her use of the email list. Sampson noted that the university had ‘already received several complaints,’ which were referred to Stony Brook’s general counsel ‘for legal review,'” the report said.
The dean wrote: “I have already received several complaints and queries about your campaign’s use of internal Stony Brook distribution lists to announce your candidacy… By way of this email, I am referring these complaints to general counsel at Stony Brook for legal review. In the meantime, I suggest that you not use them in order to maintain commity (sic) with your colleagues.”
The Beacon reported Goroff also used her public Stony Brook email address to solicit campaign cash from wealthy liberal donors.
According to communications obtained by the Free Beacon, the Democrat emailed New York astrophysicists Jim and Robin Herrnstein on July 3, 2019, to request a phone call regarding her campaign. The couple – who donated $3 million to Stony Brook in 2013 – gave a maximum contribution of $11,200 to Goroff’s campaign just two days later.
The report said Goroff also used the taxpayer-funded email system to solicit a donation from liberal Massachusetts donor Leslie Masson, who, with her husband, sent $11,200.
Goroff has continued to cite her employment at Stony Brook as a reason for her to be elected.
She says on her campaign site that she uses her “skills as a scientist to analyze the facts.”
Kendra Arnold of the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust told the Beacon that state and federal governments prohibit use of official resources for political or campaign purposes.
“So yes, she can’t use anything from her employer, whether it be an email list, computers, her professional email. She can’t use any of that,” Arnold said.
Stony Brook’s policies also explicitly prohibit workers from using university or state resources for partisan political purposes, the report said.
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