Who bought “Ken”?

I wasn’t really intending this to be Pick on Ken Reid Week, but I did promise to provide a rundown of the top campaign contributors to proud new Loudoun Republican  Supervisor “Cleaning up Roadside Trash Will Harm the Environment” Reid, so here it is.

What is striking about the current all-Republican Loudoun Board of Supervisors is not that they just received a few contributions from commercial real estate developers and land subdividers: I’d be the first to admit it’s always possible to cherry-pick lists of campaign contributors and scare up some bogeyman.

It’s rather that in every case, the Republican board members who just took office were backed by literally tens of thousands of dollars apiece from the development industry; developers were the top donors to every one of the Republicans’ campaigns; and nearly every one of their big donors (those who gave a couple of Gs and up) were developers.

Just going by those contributors who self-reported their industry affiliation as development or real estate, $460,000 flowed into Loudoun County GOP candidates’ campaigns from this industry this time around. Given the number of PACs that are little more than bundling and money-laundering operations, the actual figure is surely much higher. (Thanks again to the non-partisan folks at Virginia Public Access Project, who make all of this data freely available on their superb website.)

“Ken” was a sterling example of how easy it is to pick up cash when you hang around with the right crowd.

To take it from the top . . .

Reid’s top donor, ponying up a cool $7,000, was the late Christopher W. Walker, a Washington area commercial real estate developer famous (it was the first thing mentioned in his obit) for suing the Washington Airports Authority claiming they owed him and fellow real estate owners $200 million for the harm that the Dulles Toll Road inflicted upon them by charging tolls. (A U.S. District judge threw the suit out in 2010).

Second up on the list of concerned and civic-minded local citizens who were moved to become involved in  Reid’s election effort was Thomas M. Hirst, a Reston-based commercial real estate developer and land subdivider who plunked down $4,000.

Reid’s other top donors from the commercial land and real estate industry include Nova Building Industry Association ($2,500), Virginia Association of Realtors ($2,000), Largest Developer in the Solar System John T. “Til” Hazel ($1,600), RK Realty ($1,000), Virginia Investment Partnership LLC (the outfit behind the Kincora development and baseball stadium, $1,000).

All in all, 8 of Ken’s top 12 donors were all from the building and real estate industry. (All his other donors were distinctly small potatoes, a few hundred dollars at most.)

Reid has already shown how grateful he is to these friends who out of the goodness of their hearts helped him in his time of need.

By the way, one can’t help wondering if Ken’s driving record was known to his fellow board members (if not the public at large) when they declined to give him a spot on the board’s Transportation Committee, even though “Transportation in my No.1 area of Expertise,” he says.

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