Fmr. Goldberg Staffer Levels Ethics Allegations

By Matt Rooney | The Save Jersey Blog


Is Cory Booker the luckiest man on the planet, Save Jerseyans? Our state GOP establishment certainly didn’t do anything this cycle to dissuade him of it…

You can watch the Fox29/My9 video below and draw your own conclusions. U.S. Senate candidate Brian Goldberg isn’t taking these allegations lying down, responding both in a video interview (again, see below) and again via Twitter:

So is it just a process story? I reached out to Kelly Ann Hart, the owner of the consulting outfit referenced by Goldberg, who told me that Michael Ward is not currently an employee of K-Hart Consulting since “KHart is dormant right now.”

The full story from our friends at @ChasingNJ…

My9 New Jersey

51 thoughts on “Fmr. Goldberg Staffer Levels Ethics Allegations

  1. Susan does it really matter who he is working for? A crime was still committed by Brian Goldberg regardless of his intentions.

  2. Ummm, what crime? The kid was a volunteer and is now working for Sabrin and lying about Goldberg. Seems like a pretty clear cut betrayal and nothing else.

  3. Michael Ward worked for K-Hart Consulting prior to January 2014. K-Hart Consulting is the campaign consultant to Murray Sabrin’s Campaign. Prior to even allowing Ward to help the campaign as a volunteer, I asked him (his answers in parentheses):
    a. Was he still employed by K-Hart? (NO)
    b. Was there a conflict of interest? (NO)
    c. Was K-Hart aware that he would be working with me? (YES)
    c2. Was K-Hart OK with him working with me? (YES, not happy, but YES)

  4. Well, the FEC will look into it and determine that (not an anonymous commenter on a blog) and, if Goldberg did come to him with an arrangement that he get a job working for Goldberg’s cement company in return for volunteering on Goldberg’s campaign then they will make the necessary determinations. If Goldberg attempts to intimidate the young man, then it will become a Justice Department matter and the FBI will interview everyone involved. Lie to them and its a felony. Ask Martha Stewart about that.

  5. Goldberg didn’t do himself any favors with his comments to Fox (Channel 9). He should have run them by a lawyer first. There is no federal law that says that a campaign worker can’t know someone or indeed have once worked for someone who now works for another campaign. That said, Federal law is very clear about using corporate money for federal campaigns. It is illegal.

    If Goldberg’s corporation hired this young man with the understanding that he was to “volunteer” on Goldberg’s campaign, as Goldberg himself seemed to confirm on television, then Goldberg has a very real legal problem. Among those questions pursued by Federal investigators will be these:

    (1) Did the young hire have any experience in the cement business, or was his experience only in politics?

    (2) Was he working for the cement business BEFORE volunteering on the campaign, or the other way around?

    You can’t lie to Federal investigators because it’s a crime. So sit tight and watch this play out.

  6. So basically the whole K Hart team is now working for Sabrin. Haha, what a joke of an attempt to hurt Goldberg, and even worse that she is lying (dormant??). Go to Facebook and her whole team has ‘Sabin for Congress’ and an employer. Joke!

  7. Are you kidding? Watch the video – All Brian expressed was concern for Mr. Ward. Far more gracious than I would have been honestly. Very weak, Mr. Sabrin. You should feel ashamed if you are capable of that, of course.

  8. Good ollllllllllllllllllllllllllll Murray! Why didn’t he just hit Goldberg in the knees with a bat? lmao!! Sorry, but this one has too many fingerprints with Sabrin all over it. Goldberg for Senate!

  9. Ah, not really. Legally Goldberg stepped in it. It would have been better if he had not showed up. But let’s not argue about it. The case will work itself out. It will be as it will be. Good luck.

  10. Legally, the only fingerprints that matters are Goldberg’s. Blowing the whistle on possible illegal activity isn’t a crime. In fact, it is a civic responsibility. On the other hand… it is black letter law that corporate funds cannot be used for Federal campaigns.

  11. Well, young mister Ward is either a patsy, a fool, a victim, or just very young. He doesn’t seem to realize that if it turns out that there is nothing going on here, he has fully trashed his reputation in the service of a well-known bomb thrower who slings so much mud he barely seems to do much else. Regardless, what fool aside from the fool he is now clearly working for would ever trust him. Nicely played young fella.

  12. That’s all nice but it doesn’t matter to the case at hand. This is what matters:

    Prohibited Contributions and Expenditures

    The FECA places prohibitions on contributions and expenditures by certain individuals and organizations. The following are prohibited from making contributions or expenditures to influence federal elections:
    •Labor organizations;
    •Federal government contractors; and
    •Foreign nationals.

  13. Well Wilbert, the case would have to be investigated and strong evidence somehow found in what is at best a ‘he said / he said’ situation. And, since Goldberg has hired a number of interns under the same terms, it is probably a very tough climb. Regardless, this is clearly a campaign ‘dirty trick’ if Ward is working in any way for Sabrin, and it’s pretty clear that both Ward and Sabrin’s campaign are experiencing some serious negative impact from this nonsense.

  14. I can’t agree with you. Maybe the NJGOP needs more whistleblowers and less of the Bridgegate crowd. Why do Jersey Republicans (and Democrats for that matter) always adopt the ethics of mobsters. You are supposed to be in government for crying out loud, not organized crime. Reporting something that appears to be illegal isn’t being “a rat” (only mobsters think that way) but is actually a civic duty.

    Maybe he will become a clergyman. At least then he won’t be expected to cover up illegal activity (whether closing bridges or using corporate money for federal campaigns).

  15. How would you know that, are you Goldberg? I don’t know what documents the young man has in his possession. How would you know? An how would you know that Goldberg “has hired a number of interns under the same terms”? News to me and not very good for Mr. Goldberg. Federal investigators will want to question them too. They won’t lie for Goldberg if they’re smart.

    Care to tell us their names?

  16. Brian Goldberg for U.S. Senate – we have never had a conversation in my life. You, your campaign and your mom and dad’s business will now be hearing from my attorney.

  17. Correction: JEFF BELL AND RICH PEZZULLO are the luckiest men in New Jersey. While Goldberg and Sabrin busily make each other unviable, Bell and Pezzullo are working hard to win this nomination, and I think they both deserve if far more than either of Goldberg or Sabrin. Haven’t made up my mind as to which of those two I’m voting for – Pezzullo has the line here in Union but Bell is also a very intriguing candidate.

  18. Well played by Sabrin. In my view, which has no legal standing of any kind and could be entirely false, Goldberg acted unethically but did not (at least probably) violate the law. But Sabrin’s intentions were far more insidious, and in this he has succeeded: he has sucked Goldberg’s new kid on the block/outsider charm out of him, turning him from rising star to an embattled yet inexperienced candidate. Murray Sabrin is a master politician, and that’s why he won’t be receiving my vote- but he’s also caused me to take voting for Goldberg off the table.

  19. This race is going to be interesting because it seems to exist solely on the internet. No TV no mail.

  20. I got a call from a Pezzullo volunteer earlier today. Nice girl on the line. So as far as I know, he’s the only candidate with any presence outside convention rooms and off twitter/facebook. I’ll be voting for him most likely, unless another candidate can get on TV.

  21. Goldberg is pathetic. He took this Ward guy to every county convention with him and won a bunch of them but I think some of those counties might be considering rescinding their endorsement. And he still has the nerve to brag about them, notwithstanding that claiming ten county lines is an outright lie because Pezzullo and Sabrin are also on the line in Burlington. Not to mention he’s a compromise candidate anyway who would get a righteous shellacking from Booker. Murray Sabrin in 2014!

  22. Well you really don’t know a thing about it so stop speculating. Your view on Sabrin and the young man and all the rest is just wind. Meaningless.

    Allow the FEC to do its work. Let the Federal investigators investigate. They’ll figure it out better than you can. Meanwhile sit back and enjoy the sunshine.

  23. Rich is a good conservative and so is Bell, as is Sabrin. Goldberg, eh. But as things stand, with ten lines, he’ll be the nominee. So it looks like we’ll be reading about another Jersey scandal this fall.

    I blame the county chairs. They should have given him some money instead of making him resort to such means of self-funding. Sad all the way around.

  24. He has NINE lines but most of them are in low republican population counties- Cumberland, Mercer, Essex, Passaic, for example, lean heavily Dem and won’t give him much vote. His only important lines are Ocean, Somerset, and Hunterdon, and Pezzullo has 3 almost as big lines. Without any money and volunteers, Goldberg is toast- I talked to someone in Ocean County the other night who asked Goldberg to volunteer and never heard from him. His campaign is poorly run (seeing as two executive directors have already turned Judas) and more than likely ill-fated.

  25. A crime is a crime regardless how it’s exposed. The Goldberg campaign clearly violated federal election law and because of that Brian and whoever the designated custodian of records was will face a formal investigation with the FEC.

  26. Do you really think that after Bridgegate people want to hire Wildsteins, Kellys, and Stepiens instead of people like Mike Ward? I thought praising people who turn a blind eye to possible illegal activity went out with Watergate. Hoorah for whistleblowers and let the wrongdoers beware.

  27. Bell’s first mailer arrived today. Good for Bell. Old guy with no lines got the jump on the rest of them.

  28. It’s going to be incredibly difficult to win with 0 lines. Sabrin’s seeing that even the line in one of the most populous counties doesn’t mean much. Bell’s lack of serious organizational support (and lack of a ballot slogan) put him at serious risk of becoming an also-ran, which is a shame because he puts Goldberg and Sabrin to shame on the issues.

  29. Good observation, Mr. Sabrin Staffer. But Murray’s going to get just as much if not more flak as Goldberg for having a plant in the Goldberg campaign.

  30. Plant? That is rather baseless. I am quite certain that Ward’s relationship with KHart was well known and well publicized at least a year before Mr. Goldberg approached Ward with his improper employment scheme. Ward began working for Goldberg before there was a Sabrin campaign and before KHart’s principal joined that campaign as manager.

    Plant? Get your timeline straight.

    Besides which, the bottom line is this: The use of corporate funds for Federal campaigns can land someone in jail. Accusations of this plant or that plant are political b.s., not law.

  31. That is a rumor. “Staff” has a paid connotation, and we will all be able to see whether or not what “Anonymous” wrote is true when the next Sabrin campaign finance report is released by the FEC.

    And that’s the issue isn’t it?

    What Goldberg was doing, through his corporate employment scheme, was not reported on any campaign finance report and will never be reported. His campaign was being funded, but not in a way that was transparent. That is why I, personally, stand against the practice. Voters have the RIGHT TO KNOW.

  32. Read this law: The Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 (FECA, Pub.L. 92–225, 86 Stat. 3, enacted February 7, 1972, 2 U.S.C. § 431 et seq.).

    It isn’t legal to approach someone to work on a federal campaign in exchange for a job in a corporation you control or have influence over.

    Your ideas about “betrayal” or otherwise are not covered by the law.

    Are some Republicans really this clueless?

  33. Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Bell defeat an incumbent Republican United States Senator in 1978 without benefit of a single line?

    If memory serves, the NJGOP circa 1978 was a rather formidable political operation when compared to what remains today.

    Bell is an old favorite of mine but I don’t think I agree with him on the Neo-Con foreign policy. Russia with 8,500 nukes? It’s not going to be like Iraq and even that didn’t go to plan.

  34. Just curious to hear some opinions, who do you all think is going to come out the winner on June 3rd? Goldberg – most lines. Bell – i don’t know a positive factor about his camp. Pezzullo – has a few lines, excites the conservative base, good organization. Sabrin – most money, most experience running in NJ, name recognition, large population line.

    Let’s hear it people.

  35. I think Pezzullo wins. Other campaigns have no organization, not even an office. Goldberg has no money, and party bigs would do anything to stop Sabrin. Been seeing Pezzullo’s bumper stickers all up and down the parkway. I’ll tell you this, whoever wins, it’s gonna be real close.

  36. I feel badly for you. You have been duped. Ward has ALWAYS worked for KHart, there was no lapse, that is a fact. He is her peon. And for what? No one should hire either one of these low life back handed “consultants” KHart always plays dirty. Ward came to you knowing that when the primary got close, he would slam you to make Sabrin look better. Hence, KHarts peon. Do a little digging if it comes down to it, not hard to find the real deal on this Mr. Goldberg.

  37. Considering that Rich Pezzullo probably has more regulatory requirements in his small businesses (yes, plural) than any of the other candidates, you can bet Christie’s bridge that he is very meticulous of how his campaign financing is being handled. Keep in mind that whomever comes out of the primary winner will be subject to the biggest anal exam in New Jersey in 2014, with Booker’s Hollywood friends and liberal hit groups looking for ANY discrepancy, real or perceived, that they can pounce on and milk for days, with no or little help from the Jersey Establishment GOP. That ship needs to be absolutely waterproof, as well as fortified when the fit hits the shan during the general election season.

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