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Out of Town Committee Established to Support Tammy Kim’s Mayoral Campaign

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A new committee to support Tammy Kim for mayor in the November election has filed with the state to begin accepting contributions. The paperwork includes an address, phone number and treasurer from Imperial Beach in San Diego County.

Calling itself “Friends of Tammy Kim — a committee in support of Tammy Kim for Mayor 2024,” the committee’s paperwork lists Briana Bilbray as treasurer. Bilbray, the daughter of former Representative Brian Bilbray (R-Imperial Beach), is also known as Briana Baleskie.

She has been treasurer for many campaigns and organizations, including Paul Gosar for Congress in Arizona, and a committee called “Build the Wall.” Baleskie was fined by the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPCC) in 2021 for four late filings of campaign spending reports and last month for one late filing.

The “principal” for the committee is listed as Jorge Oliveras, also with Baleskie’s office address.

Friends of Tammy Kim filed as a “recipient committee,” which is typically a committee that accepts donations and then distributes those funds to other committees that are involved in active campaigning, especially mailing to voters. A recipient committee is independent of the candidate’s official campaign committee, so it is not bound by campaign contribution limits, like Irvine’s $620 contribution limit.

Vice Mayor Larry Agran, Kim’s opponent in this year’s mayoral election, was victimized in the 2022 election by a recipient committee that took in hundreds of thousands of dollars from developers. It then passed the money on to another committee that used it to generate more than a dozen attack mailers against Agran in the weeks leading up to the election.

This new recipient committee, with its San Diego County ties, fits with the trend of Tammy Kim’s campaign to attract most of its financial support from outside of Irvine. A majority of money raised by Kim’s official campaign has come from outside of Irvine, with 59% of the cash raised by Kim coming from non-Irvine addresses.

Roger Bloom

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