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Eye On Boise

All the money trails lead to VanderSloot

The group "Idaho Citizens for Justice" has now filed its overdue campaign finance report, and it shows that the group received $38,000 - half from Melaleuca Inc. and half from "Citizens for Commonsense" in Idaho Falls - for its last-minute campaign against Judge John Bradbury and in favor of Idaho Supreme Court Justice Roger Burdick, whom Bradbury is challenging. "Citizens for Common Sense Solutions," in turn, is a PAC whose own campaign finance report - also just filed this afternoon, a week after the deadline - shows it received $19,000 in donations, all from Melaleuca - meaning the personal-care products firm owned by Idaho Falls conservative activist Frank VanderSloot is the sole funder of both groups. You can read the Citizens for Justice finance report here, and the Citizens for Common Sense Solutions finance report here.

Jonathan Haines, chairman of the Citizens for Justice group, said he used to work for Melaleuca, but now does marketing and consulting work in Idaho Falls, where he has lived since 2008. Haines said the group has spent its entire $38,000 in contributions on newspaper ads in Boise, Twin Falls and Idaho Falls, sending a statewide mailer, and running radio ads in Idaho Falls, Pocatello, Twin Falls, American Falls, Boise and elsewhere, all targeting Bradbury and touting Burdick. "I didn't mean to do anything outside of the law, I didn't mean to do anything that wasn't kosher," said Haines, who said he thought he'd filed the required paperwork. "It's a shame there was a glitch with the paperwork, but the end goal was basically to help educate the electorate and to make them informed, so they can make the informed decision on which judge they can support."

Eye On Boise

News, happenings and more from the Idaho Legislature and the state capital.