ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

February 5, 2009 -

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff (R), whose office is currently reviewing video game legislation drafted by disbarred Miami attorney Jack Thompson, received a campaign contribution from the video game industry in 2008, according to public records obtained by GamePolitics.

The Entertainment Software Association, which represents the interests of U.S. video game publishers, made a $3,000 donation to Shurtleff in May of 2008. The popular, moderate Republican would go on to win an unprecedented third term in November's election.

At the same time, the ESA also made lesser contributions to a pair of state senators, Ross Romero (D) and John Valentine (R).

For his part, Shurtleff has been no stranger to video game issues in recent years.

- In 2005 he called for a boycott on Eidos's cops-and-robbers shooter 25 to Life.

- In 2006 he appeared in a public service announcement advocating the ESRB rating system.

- In 2007 he advised the Utah Legislature to delay consideration of an earlier Jack Thompson-authored bill while a federal court considered the legality of a similar measure in Oklahoma. Afterward, Thompson called for Shurtleff's impeachment. The Oklahoma law was eventually ruled unconstitutional.

UPDATE: In the original version of this article, Sen. Ross Romero was mistakenly listed as a Republican. He is a Democrat and that correction has been made.


Comments

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

Thompson will soon have the right to remain silent, the ability on the other hand.....

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

Yeah, I used to think all political contributions were terrible because it basically amounted to bribery.  Truth is, the ESA isn't buying this guy's opinion on video game legislation.  The AG has already demonstrated that he takes a dim view of video game legislation, and as a result the ESA would like for him to stay in office.  If you call this bribery, then you'd also have to say that thousands of Americans 'bribed' Barack Obama into closing Guantanamo and banning controversial interrogation methods.

Also, did JT have a basis under which the AG should have been impeached beyond 'I don't like him'?  Does he at least realize that you aren't really supposed to impeach people for having done nothing other than disagreeing with you?

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

Does make you wonder, money (or trade etc) for a favor is older than recorded history.  Pay to play has been around for a llloongg time.   Some acutally bright politician in history must have noticed this and made it legal in the form of donations with safeguards.  If it is legal it is not bribery which is illegal, cannot have it both ways.   Dont really have to like it but the amounts in question are not large (and are capped) so the rampant potential for harm is just not there. 

As for jackie and the AG.  No.  He did not have grounds for impeachment or if he had them he chose to so use them which is neigh impossible for jackie.  The mores of polite society and oft times the laws themselves mean nothing to one such as him.  The AG got in his way and had to be removed,  kind of akin to why jackie tried to sue Dennis and GP/ECA.  You will note the AG is still there as is Dennis so I would not get to excited about jackies threats.  

I agree that this is likely to turn into a circus before the end.  jackie being who and what he is will just have to be in the spotlight and claim all victories (if any) while denying all failings.  The potential for amusement is there if the actors play their parts, sadly jackie tends to ignore or forget the script. 

 

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

I think this could be the final curtain call for Jackie-poo (If he starts acting like an ass, you be the judge of what happens next)

America has just became its own version of the Jerry Springer Show after a bizarre moment in Florida involving a carnival worker.

NAA naa naa naa naa NAA BAT-JACK!!!

We all know this is a donation and rather harmless. If the AG doesn't bend over backwards over for BatJack (See Jack's colorful history claiming he takes the role of Batman against porn :P) I'm sure he'll resume his accusations to impeach him as well as to state that he is under the videogame industry payroll or something ridiculous like that he is involved in some sort of fabricated ESRB fraud.

Either way I am curious to see what his reaction to Mr Thompson's propose bill would be. Would Jack's recent disbarrment have any impact to this proposal? Would the bill be considered unconstituational? Perhaps he might stamp approval on it and bring it to the federal court? All interesting questions...

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

Were making a donation to prevent JTs law from being passed?

Magic Taco

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

Wait a minute....you mean a lobbyist group made donations to political campaigns?!?!?!

Oh...my....GOD!!!!  This is shocking.  SHOCKING!

JACK PLEASE PROTECT US LIKE ONLY YOU CAN!!!

"You know what I wish? I wish all the scum of the Earth had one throat and I had my hands about it."

"You know what I wish? I wish all the scum of the Earth had one throat and I had my hands about it."

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

Sorry Rorschach, no throats for you today :)

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

When I read 'disbarred activist' I got this wonderful mental image of some kind of activism professional sociaty that could kick people out who could then no longer be activists ^_^

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

yes, I could have worded that better...

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

This is going to turn into a circus.  JT (doesn't mater), the PTC, and the Eagle Forum will be out and about on this.

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

The circus may indeed be coming to town, as it did in Louisiana in 2006 and in Utah in 2007.

Both were quite entertaining as political theater, although I'm sure the legislators and other officials involved don't have fond remembrances.

But, you know, here at GP I always like to publish the true and complete story, where ever it leads.

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

At least you had the courage to post it and not keep it "behind the scenes"

Sortableturnip's Law: As an online discussion of video game violence grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Jack Thompson approaches 1

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

Jack's going to have a field day with that one if his "bulletproof" video game bill doesn't pass...

Sortableturnip's Law: As an online discussion of video game violence grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Jack Thompson approaches 1

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

He'd have accused him of it regardless, whether this had been published or not.

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

In the two letters John Bruce has posted on line addressed to this AG he has yet to accuse him of being bribed by the games industry.

He did however warn this AG that the games industry has a history of bribing and threatening politicians in order to defeat game laws. He used Louisiana as an example.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

True, but then, if you read his demand to Impeach Shurtleff after the last law failed, he pretty much made that claim. At the moment, he's trying to stay on the good side of him, if the Law fails, he'll revert to his old self.

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

well, I've seen a few letters that he sent to Shurtleff over the last couple days and I recall at least one sort of offhand reference to the ESRB PSA.

But, for now, he appears to be playing nicely. No guarantees as to the shelf life of that, however...

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

So should we set up the betting pool for when Thompson breaks?

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

I do not want to Know What would happen If JT Blew a fuse after his video game law was struck down(over his bad behavior in florida) It'll be like the LA video game law failed and JT's going to throw a Hissy fit only this time it'll be times ten

America has just became its own version of the Jerry Springer Show after a bizarre moment in Florida involving a carnival worker.

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

As I've said before, campaign donations are not bribes. Bribery requires a quid pro quo, an understanding between the parties that the money is buying something for the donor.

Countless people and organizations give campaign donations for a variety of reasons.

That said, I wouldn't be surprised if we hear about this donation again in relation to the Utah bill.

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

Sorry, forgot to add the "not that that is how it happened" disclaimer.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

I still count it as a bribe, and don't think anyone should be bribing these politicians who are already dirty.

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Re: ESA Made Campaign Donation to Utah Attorney General

I wouldn't. IF it were to be counted as a bribe, all campaign donations regardless of who contributed would be considered a bribe.

I don't know about you, but I like to donate to my favorite candidates if I feel it will help them get reelected.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

 
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