Maryland Democrat and daughter caught misusing campaign funds

October 31, 2019

It is the oldest trick in the politician’s handbook to take those campaign funds and treat yourself. Some, however, forget to read the next sentence, which states, “Don’t get caught.”

Tawanna Gaines, a Democratic state lawmaker in Maryland, and her daughter, Anitra Edmond, who long worked as her mother’s campaign treasurer, are facing criminal prosecution for putting campaign funds to personal use. 

Open and shut case

Just two weeks ago, Gaines appeared in court and pleaded guilty to wire fraud.

“The former lawmaker admitted to spending $22,000 in campaign donations on personal expenses, including an Amazon Fire TV Stick, a cover for her swimming pool, hair appointments, and dental work,” the Washington Examiner reports.

Gaines served in Maryland’s House of Delegates since 2001. But the allegations forced her to resign earlier this month.

Now Gaines’ daughter is following in her mother’s footsteps: both misused campaign funds, together, and both are currently getting a taste of the justice system, together.

Like mother, like daughter

On Monday, Edmond appeared in court, also facing a wire fraud charge. Edmond worked as treasurer for her mother’s Prince George’s County campaign committee, “Friends of Tawanna P. Gaines,” since 2005.

We know what her mother did with the campaign funds. But it has yet to be revealed how Edmond treated herself.

Edmond’s arraignment is scheduled take place on November 18th. If she is found guilty, the government, at a minimum, is asking that she forfeit $35,000.

Her mother, on the other hand, is much further down the path of justice. Gaines, as stated in the conditions of her plea deal, will be sentenced to anywhere from eight to 33 months in prison, and she will be forced to hand over $22,500 in restitution.

Worrying trend

When Gaines pleaded guilty, she became the third Prince George’s County Democrat to be convicted of wrongdoing since 2018, according to The Washington Post. William Campos and Michael Vaughn, both former delegates, are currently serving prison sentences for accepting bribes from business owners who were looking to get the county’s liquor sales changed.

One wonders whether there are any more bad eggs in Prince George’s County. Beware, residents!

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Robert Ayers

Robert Ayers is a staff writer for Conservative Institute. He has a bachelor’s degree from Quinnipiac University and a J.D. from the University of Connecticut.