Spring has certainly sprung in Cherokee county, with an ad for shotgun specials arriving in my e-mail box.  Should I bag a turkey with the Beretta 3901 12 Gauge for only $559.99, or go high-end with the Browning Citori for $1599.99?

My gut told me that something was not right.  While I do support Second Amendment rights, I’m as avid a supporter of the CAN-SPAM Act.  So how did my name end up on the shotgun list?  I had already once ignored the Christmas special e-mail from the same source, so I was determined to track this one down.

Hi Caliber LLC, the sender of the e-mail, is owned by none other than Rep. Sean Jerguson, (R-Holly Springs).  Sean is the incumbent in the newly-redistricted State District 21, slated to become effective in January 2013.  And I will be in that new district.

Still, I didn’t sign up to receive advertisements from Hi Caliber.  I signed up to receive communications from the incumbent for State District 21.  Puzzled, I set to work to solve this mystery.

Jerguson’s Hi Caliber LLC is fortunate, as one of the top recipients of stimulus dollars in Cherokee county via the Small Business Administration, with an award of $755,000.  Nice bit of “wealth redistribution,” I suppose.

I digress, so back to the e-mail.  I noted that it clearly states “Georgians for Sean Jerguson”, in both the header and footer sections of the e-mail.  Next, conveniently included in the footer is a link to Rep. Jerguson’s campaign website.  Last, I noted that the link for Unsubscribe, Preferences and Report Spam options includes “username=electsea”—an apparent reference (and exact match) to Jerguson’s campaign e-mail account with MyNewsletterBuilder.  So, it would appear that constituents who sign up for campaign communications from Sean also will also receive business communications from his company.  What a marvelous bonus!

In Georgia, one can only assume that there is virtually no ethical or legal problem with anything a legislator chooses to do.  And in Sean’s case, that includes not only using your campaign to solicit business from your constituents, but suggesting that it should be just fine to carry firearms on MARTA, give your 4-year-old daughter a pink handgun, or propose sales and use tax exemptions for firearms.

Since I really want to keep track of what Jerguson is doing, I’ll put up with the weapon solicitations for now.  I will, however, gobble loudly when I see a turkey.

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8 Responses to Rep. Sean Jerguson uses his campaign email list to sell guns

  1. Dave Bearse says:

    Maybe Sean had his business used some of its simulus dollars to buy the e-mail list from his campaign.

  2. Holy Dog says:

    One other point…it may be a violation of Georgia’s ethics code (O.C.G.A. 45-10-1 for any legislator to do something of this sort:

    “VIII. Never use any information coming to him confidentially in the performance of governmental duties as a means for making private profit.”

    Or a conflict of interest, O.C.G.A. 45-10-21(a):

    ” (a) It is essential to the proper operation of democratic government that public officials be independent and impartial, that governmental decisions and policy be made in the proper channels of the governmental structure, that public office not be used for private gain other than the remuneration provided by law, and that there be public confidence in the integrity of government. The attainment of one or more of these ends is impaired whenever there exists a conflict between the private interests of an elected official or a government employee and his duties as such. The public interest, therefore, requires that the law protect against such conflicts of interest and establish appropriate ethical standards with respect to the conduct of elected officials and government employees in situations where conflicts exist.”

  3. Holy Dog says:

    @Bill Cazier

    Wow. That may be the case, but how does that justify using a position of public trust to increase the revenue at a private business?

  4. Bill Cazier says:

    Interesting point of view. I failed to see any mention of the number of new jobs the store has created. Nor did I see any information about the additional sales tax collected. Not to mention the people who have learned to shoot safely.

    I have visited the store and will visit time and time again, thanks for being part of the community.

    • Steve says:

      And visit it you should, if you so choose.

      But an elected official– Democrat or Republican– using their mailing list to hock their own wares poses serious problems in my book.

  5. DJ Nash says:

    Nice job, very well written!

  6. Ladida says:

    So if one follows the links on this email, does the purchase count as a campaign contribution? Just so we’re clear.

  7. Jules says:

    sigh, I thought his business was subdivision developer? Wasn’t he the kind of developer that slapped up the 100,000 house specials for a while?

    Since that whole economic stream went tits up with the end of derivatives and mortgage bundling, I guess Sean jumped on the next band wagon. GUNS, cause yeah that guy in the White House is regular barn burner of a sales incentive.

    Ah the things we’ve all got to do to put food in our babies mouths.