Sunday, October 11, 2009

Who Is Khalid Khan, And why Does He Keep Sending Me These Slick Mailings That He’s NOT Reporting on His Campaign Finance Disclosure?

Yeah: As of Saturday past the postman (or woman––we no longer have a “regular” postal carrier, apparently) has dropped into our mailbox eight (ocho) professionally produced mailings touting the many and variegated wonders of Khalid Khan, candidate for the District F city council seat being vacated by the non-related and term-limited M. J. Khan, who seeks greater glory and a larger paycheck as city controller. That’s more direct mail than we’ve received even from media-mad mayoral candidate Peter Brown. In fact, that’s more mail than we’ve received from all candidates for all city offices, combined, in the current campaign season.

But, as also noted this very day by Greg of Greg’s Opinion, another of the large stable of handsome and talented bloggers who call District F home, Khalid Khan appears not to list any expenditures for printing and postage on the campaign finance report he was was required to submit to the city last week. According to our still-decent but not wholly infallible memory, all but one and possibly two of these mailings arrived before Sept. 24, the cutoff date for reporting on city candidates‘ most recent disclosures. And some landed in our box before Aug. 26, the day that Khan for some reason listed as the starting date for his report (the concluding date is Oct. 24, suggesting KK possesses powers of prognostication that would be invaluable in an elected official, or market analyst), although the latest report required of fund-raising and spending candidates was supposed to cover the July 1-Sept. 24 period.

Khan’s report is a a masterwork in other aspects: He signed an affidavit attesting that he had not received or spent over $20,000, thus allowing him to avoid filing his disclosure electronically, then blithely went on to list a total of $34,010 in contributions (all of KK’s donors appear to be fellow Muslims, which does not faze us in the least, but we’re sure this baleful lack of diversity could be bothersome to some of Our Town’s leading Diversicrats, who of course avoid genuinely diverse areas such Alief or Sharpstown when they’re out and about celebrating their own hearty embrace of diversity). Among the $5,939 in expenses Khan listed for his fanciful reporting period were payments for photography, a Web site, voter data and signage, but nothing to the direct-mail company whose presorted postage-paid stamp his mailings bear. Interestingly––sort of––the address listed for Khan’s designated treasurer, one Ray Cunningham, is the same as that of Khan’s travel agency.

One of Khan’s mailings––they all highlight his 6-point “crime prevention plan”––laughably claims he’s “restoring integrity to District F.” That suggests Mr. Khan possesses not only a sense of humor but a certain sense of noblesse, since, as Greg, titular impresario of Greg’s Opinion, points out, KK doesn’t exactly reside in District F. We had noticed that in his mailings Khan has artfully skirted the issue of residency–-if we remember correctly, it arose four two years back when KK pressed an unsuccessful challenge against incumbent non-resident Councilman M.J. Khan–-by declaring that he’s “proud to call Houston home” and “has made District F his home for business for 22 years.” (Robert Kane, another candidate in the District F race, says he’s filed a complaint with the city’s Ethics Committee challenging whether Khan and two other opponents, Joe Chow and Al Hoang, meet the residency requirement to run for the office. While residency is a legally squishy issue and difficult to enforce [although it really shouldn’t be], Kane has compiled cross-checked documentation suggesting that maybe they shouldn’t be on the ballot.)

Yes, we know: Khalid Khan probably has a better chance of dunking a basketball from a standing position that being elected to the city council, but his blatant disregard of the rules is bothersome, rules being for everyone and all that business. Somebody oughta do something about it ...

1 comment:

Greg said...

It's settled now ... I'm getting business cards printed with "Titular Impresario" as my title!