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Home / Media Notebook / Law Enforcement Alliance of America

Law Enforcement Alliance of America

Posted on 09-30-2004 12:01 PM EDT

The Law Enforcement Alliance of America [501(c)(4)] has been sued by a pair of Texas Democrats whom the group targeted with attack ads in 2002, the Austin American-Statesman reported Tuesday.

The lawsuit charges that the LEAA violated a state prohibition against the use of corporate money to influence Texas elections and claims the LEAA also violated Texas law by failing to disclose its donors.

The LEAA spent an estimated $1.5 million on TV commercials in 2002 that accused attorney general candidate Kirk Watson of making “millions suing doctors, hospitals and small businesses” while the praising Watson’s Republican opponent for believing in "common-sense lawsuit reform."

The LEAA also distributed direct mail pieces that said Democratic legislative candidate Mike Head, a criminal defense lawyer, was "on the side of convicted baby killers and murderers."

Both Watson and Head lost their races.

Watson and Head’s lawsuit also names John Colyandro, former director of Texans for a Republican Majority, a Section 527 organization established by House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas). Colyandro was indicted earlier this month on felony charges that accuse him of laundering money through the Republican National Committee to convert $190,000 in corporate contributions into non-corporate money, which was subsequently contributed to state House candidates.

The LEAA received $4.5 million in 2002 from an unidentified benefactor or benefactors, tax records reportedly show. Travis County prosecutors hypothesize that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce was the undisclosed contributor, the Statesman reported.

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