Representative Lee Hein has complained about “special interest” money and “outside groups” being involved in his primary against pro-life Republican Rep. Steve Bradley.
Hein, who voted against the Heartbeat Bill and the Protect Life Amendment, has taken claimed that he isn’t influenced by “special interests.”
In a recent video posted to Facebook, Hein told constituents a Des Moines special interest group has entered in the race and has deep pockets and is distorting his “conservative record.”
A number of conservative groups have endorsed Bradley — The FAMiLY Leader, Iowa Right to Life, Americans for Prosperity — so it is difficult to know which conservative group he is talking about.
But he went on to say this…
“I’m not beholden to special interest groups, to lobbyists, or even primary opponents,” Hein said. “And that’s why they’ve set their sights on me.”
That is interesting considering that in 2021, Hein received more than $50,000 from PACs and another $3,685 from lobbyists. That was just in 2021.
Lobbyists, who represent “special interests,” are prohibited by law from contributing to campaigns for legislative candidates while lawmakers are in session.
But according to Hein’s recent fundraising report, he collected a lot of checks from lobbyists and PACs during the 2022 legislative session.
*Gary Grant represents 19 different interests. He gave Hein $250 on Jan. 24.
*Doug Struyk represents 38 different interests. He gave Hein $250 on Jan. 24.
*Michael Heller represents eight interests, including Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (ethanol mandate bill). Heller gave Hein $200 on Jan. 24.
*Tony Phillips represents 17 different groups. He gave Hein $150 on Jan. 24.
*David Scott represents 13 different groups. He gave Hein $100 on Jan. 24.
*Wesley Ehrecke contributed $50 to Hein on Jan. 24. He lobbies for the Iowa Gaming Association.
*Phil Jeneary represents the Iowa Association of School Boards. He gave Hein $40 on Jan. 24.
*Noah Tabor represents 18 different interests. He gave Hein $30 on Jan. 24.
That is another $1,070 from lobbyists at a time no lobbyist was allowed to contribute according to the Iowa Campaign Ethics & Disclosure Board’s website.
PACs are also not allowed to contribute to candidates during session.
*Bankers Unite in Legislative Decisions PAC gave Hein $4,000 on Jan. 24.
*REALTORS PAC Iowa gave Hein $2,000 on Jan. 24.
*Manufactured Housing PAC gave Hein $1,500 on Jan. 24.
*Golden Grain Energy LLC PAC gave Hein $1,250 on Jan. 24.
*Elite PAC gave Hein $1,000 on Jan. 24.
*Absolute Energy PAC gave Hein $500 on Jan. 24.
*Iowa Agribusiness PAC gave Hein $500 on Jan. 24.
*Union Pacific Fund for Effective Government gave Hein $500 on Jan. 24.
*Iowa Telecommunications Association PAC gave Hein $500 on Jan. 24.
*Iowa Restaurant Association PAC gave Hein $300 on Jan. 24.
*Eide Walton PAC gave Hein $250 on Jan. 24.
*Iowa Association of Nurse Anesthetists PAC gave Hein $250.
*Iowa Chiropractic Society PAC gave Hein $250.
That’s another $12,800 from PACs at a time PACs were not legally allowed to contribute to campaigns.
This is on top of the more than $50,000 Hein was given by PACs in 2021. And that is in addition to the $3,685 Hein received in 2021 from lobbyists.
That’s a lot of money from PACs and lobbyists to a state legislator. Especially one who can’t be beholden to PACs and lobbyists.