New federal filings submitted today show that James and Elizabeth Crumpacker gave a combined $125,000 last month to the Club for Growth political action committee, a Washington, D.C., group that has been running ads slamming former state Rep. Knute Buehler (R-Bend).
The ads are part of an independent expenditure campaign. But a prime beneficiary of anti-Buehler sentiment is one of the four major candidates in the race to succeed U.S. Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.): the Crumpackers' son, Jimmy.
As WW has reported, after Walden announced his retirement late last year, Jimmy Crumpacker changed his voter registration from a condo his parents own in South Waterfront to a vacation home they own in Bend.
Despite his lack of political experience—he's a first-time candidate—Crumpacker racked up endorsements from influential anti-abortion and pro-gun groups and has proven to be a strong fundraiser. He enters the final day of the primary election in a strong position to compete against Buehler and two other established politicians, former state Sens. Cliff Benz (R-Ontario) and Jason Atkinson (R-Central Point).
Crumpacker's parents, who live in Dunthorpe, already directly donated the maximum allowed amount to their son. Unlike in Oregon state races, where there are no contribution limits, federal races are capped at $2,800 per person per cycle.
But they can take advantage of federal laws that allow independent expenditure campaigns to raise and spend as much as they like, as long as those campaigns do not coordinate with the candidates they support.
Here's an example of an ad the Club for Growth paid for and ran against Buehler.
Crumpacker did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Ballots must be delivered to an official drop-off site by 8 pm tonight in order to be counted.