By Bruce A. Smith
In response to tremendous pressure from Republicans to return monies donated by Ramtha channel JZ Knight, local Democrats are grabbing a middle ground and giving the money to charity. The action comes as Republicans are in an uproar over videos released this week that show Ramtha giving a profanity-laced teaching condemning the Catholic Church and priests who rape children. The videos are quite provocative and disturbing to many, and one video also castigates Catholics of Mexican descent.
Bruce Lachney’s campaign announced today that he is giving his money to unspecified “educational scholarships.” Mr. Lachney is running for the Washington state senate from the 2nd Legislative District and an official in his campaign has confirmed that it received $3,600 from Ms. Knight. Lachney is challenging the incumbent, Randi Becker (R) from Eatonville.
In addition, Mr. Lachney spoke at Ramtha’s School of Enlightenment for about ten minutes in September as part of a larger event that was live-streamed to students around the world who signed-up for it, and included remarks from Thurston County Councilmember Sandra Romero. Lachney addressed the group on his primary campaign theme of the need for a revitalized state involvement in education.
The Lachney-Becker race is considered very close, which is surprising since Becker’s seat was once-considered safe for her re-election, and Republicans are pouring money into her campaign. A recent Republican mailing to Eatonville area voters was scathing in its attack on Lachney, calling him “Wacky Lachney” for his association with Ms. Knight.
Ms. Becker and her campaign have not responded to multiple attempts by the Mountain News to discuss this mailing and the nature of her party’s attack on Lachney.
In addition, the Washington State Democratic Party has reportedly announced that it is donating the $50,000 it received from Knight to two different charities. The Seattle Times is reporting that the Democrats are giving half of the funds to Referendum 74, the effort to legalize gay marriage, and the other half to the Anti-Defamation League.
Below is the full Lachney campaign announcement:
LACHNEY CAMPAIGN DONATES JZ KNIGHT MONEY FOR EDUCATIONAL SCHOLARSHIPS
For Immediate release
Sunday October 28, 2012
Eatonville-State Senate Candidate Bruce Lachney 2LD
“I met Ms. Knight only once. Her thoughts and beliefs are her own. As a member of the same Lutheran Church for more than twenty years, I find the language and tenor of her discourse disturbing. As such, the campaign will be donating any contributions from Ms. Knight to educational scholarships.
In regards to the election; voters choose their democracy. Ms Becker’s democracy is anchored in the slander of innuendo and the smear of “guilt by association.” The Lachney campaign secures democracy in the issues: education, the budget, and reason. We are confident that voters November 6th will know the difference. Best wishes to my supporters.” said Bruce Lachney