A U.S. congressional candidate for Texas missed the deadline for filing his financial disclosure form based on when he hit a fundraising threshold.
Republican Jake Ellzey entered the race with decades of experience as a fighter pilot and small business owner at his back. His hope is to represent the sixth congressional district of Texas. His campaign does face at least one issue at the moment – he has not yet disclosed his finances as required under federal law.
Federal law requires a candidate to file a financial disclosure form within 30 days of receiving or spending $5,000. Federal Election Commission filings for Ellzey state that he hit that threshold in mid-December – meaning that he should have filed his financial disclosure form Jan. 15.
Ellzey took full responsibility for the problem and vowed to start taking steps to rectify the situation. He notes that the mistake was caused by an oversight and that he was unaware there was a problem until InsideSources reached out for comment Monday. His campaign expects to file the disclosure form within the week.
“I am not a politician, and that is evident of me not getting this paperwork done on time,” Ellzey told InsideSources. “I pride myself on being accountable and I dropped the ball on this one. It’s entirely my responsibility and entirely my fault. We will owe a $200 late filing fee.”
Ellzey began his 20 years as a U.S. Navy fighter pilot after graduating from the United States Naval Academy in 1992. He completed tours in Afghanistan and Iraq before starting his own business as a civilian contractor. The Dallas Morning News endorsed him in an editorial piece that pointed to his military and business background.
“Once you’re a federal candidate it’s almost like they’re setting you up for failure unless you have a full-time campaign staff,” Ellzey said. “I know that’s not the intent, but there are so many things you can drop the ball on and this is one of them.”
Federal disclosure forms are intended to highlight any potential conflicts of interests that the public should be aware of. Ellzey noted that he tried to be diligent about getting paperwork in – but, unfortunately, overlooked the disclosure form. He added that he has nothing to hide and that his disclosure forms should be available soon. The campaign should be compliant once it files the disclosure form and pays the late fee.
“When I was at the naval academy, there were four answers to any question,” Ellzey said. “‘Yes, sir’; ‘no, sir’; ‘no excuse, sir’; and ‘I’ll find out, sir’. And on this one, I have no excuse. I will rectify the situation, and I’ll get it done in the next two or three days.”
Incumbent Republican Joe Barton not filing for reelection for the sixth district led to over a dozen candidates moving in to replace him – five Democrats and 11 Republicans. The primary election is scheduled to take place on March 6, 2018.
Ellzey was also a candidate for the state house back in 2014.