With Tracey Mann’s recent success has come increased scrutiny, specifically dealing with a contribution he made to the Jim Slattery for Senate campaign in 2008. Other campaigns have latched on to this, painting Mann as being disloyal to the Republican cause, and supporting a Democrat over Republican Pat Roberts.
We reached out to Mann to explain the contribution, and received the following response:
“The Slattery’s are long time family friends. I don’t apologize for building relationships with people I disagree with politically,” Mann said. “I contributed to Jim in his primary race against his Democrat opponent, Lee Jones. I have contributed twice as much to Senator Roberts and think that he has done an excellent job representing Kansas both in the House and now in the Senate. I have discussed the matter with Senator Roberts, he understands family friendship, and considers the matter closed.”
Mann then offered some choice words to campaigns attempting to use this issue against him.
“This kind of negative campaigning does nothing to solve the problems that have put our economy and future at risk. I’ve put forward a more detailed and more rigorous plan than any other candidate,” Mann said. “If people want to talk about this contribution instead of their ideas and solutions, you have to question both the quality of their ideas and their commitment to the people rather than their own political ambition.”
Looking into FEC records, it does show that other members of Mann’s family supported Slattery as well in 2008, and that Mann did indeed contribute $1,000 to Robert’s campaign in February of 2009. Furthermore, FEC records indicate that aside from the Slattery family, Mann has not financially supported any other Democrat.
Also supporting Mann’s claim that Roberts considers the matter closed is a quote from Robert’s Chief of Staff Jackie Cottrell in a July 11 story from the Salina Journal.
Tracey long ago explained the situation to Sen. Roberts,” Cottrell said. “Sen. Roberts understands the issue of family friendship and considers the matter closed.”