Oklahoma superintendent, 4 others facing campaign charges

The Associated Press - November 4, 2016 11:37 am

Joy Hofmeister

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Prosecutors have filed felony charges against Oklahoma’s top public education official, saying she raised money illegally while challenging the incumbent superintendent in the 2014 Republican primary and coordinated attack ads in violation of state law.

Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater on Thursday announced the charges against Superintendent Joy Hofmeister. Two political consultants, a union leader and the former head of a schools group were also charged.

Hofmeister said she would fight the allegations and continue working.

The five are accused of circumventing state campaign finance laws by conspiring to funnel corporate contributions into a negative campaign against Hofmeister’s Republican opponent, Janet Barresi. It is illegal in Oklahoma for a candidate to coordinate such expenditures.

Hofmeister became just the second Republican to lead the state’s 700,000-student public school system.

 

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