Candidate For NJ Senate Dodging Allegations From Former Campaign - My9 New Jersey

Candidate For NJ Senate Dodging Allegations From Former Campaign Worker

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Keyport, New Jersey (My9NJ) - There is a U.S. Senate election coming up in New Jersey and while Cory Booker was victorious in the special election that took place last year, four Republican candidates are now vying to be the one to take-on Booker.

One of those candidates is Brian Goldberg who is now battling some accusations from a former staffer. Former executive director for Goldberg’s senate campaign, 20 year-old Michael Ward, alleges that Goldberg paid him to work as the executive director of his campaign from March 2014 through the end of April 2014, but did not pay him through campaign funds. Instead, he allegedly paid him through his company “Beyond Concrete” and did not disclose that to the FEC.

“The fact of the matter is that I was being compensated through his family’s decorative concrete business and not through personal funds of his own or from campaign funds and none of my salary was disclosed to the FEC,” Ward explained.

He says he had an understanding with Goldberg that he would do light work for Goldberg's actual business "Beyond Concrete", but he would spend the majority of his time working on the campaign.

“What he did was he gave me remedial tasks to do for the business such as checking emails, checking voicemails and that somehow legitimized the fact that I was getting paid from the business. Yet 99% of my time was being spent on the campaign,” Ward said.

Goldberg chimed in to set the record straight.

“When mike first joined back in January he was a volunteer for the campaign, and so at that point he was volunteering. I had a different assistant at that point she actually took a position as a legislative aide and she decided to go the non-campaign route. And so Mike said I’d like to do that. I’d like to work for your business so I can get paid. Therefore I’m making some money while I’m volunteering and helping the campaign,” Goldberg explained.

Goldberg also said that the bulk of the time that Ward was working on the campaign was done on nights and weekends, but if he had any down time at work, he could use that time to work on the campaign. He insisted that he didn’t keep track of what exactly his employees were doing.

Bradley Smith is a former FEC chairman who chimed in to discuss if there was any illegal activity going on in this case.

“The law in this area is really pretty simple. A business cannot pay somebody to go to work for a campaign. That’s a clear violation of the law. On the other hand, there’s no law at all that prohibits a person from volunteering to work on a campaign of their boss or any other candidate they want. So what you’re looking at in a case like this is really a question of a burden of proof,” Smith said.

So what are Ward’s motivations for making these allegations?

“Fighting against things like this and looking for just open transparency and being able to find leaders that we can trust and are honest in their dealings in politics. That’s what it’s all about for me, and that’s why I got involved,” he said.

Goldberg had his own opinion as to why Ward would make these accusations.

“The only think I know is that in the past, he had actually worked for the same consultant that’s working with one of my opponents. I’m actually personally hurt. I thought he was a friend. So take a phone call, let’s go get a cup of coffee and find out where this is coming from. If you have a problem, talk to me about it. I have an open door policy,” he said.

As far as the election goes, Goldberg said that not many New Jerseyan’s even know there is a Senate election coming up.


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