The challenge for North Dakota Democrat George Sinner’s House campaign is getting taken seriously as a contender. Now it appears as though he’s lost at least one key member of his campaign staff mid-election.
Sinner dithered for months before making his campaign announcement late in 2014. He is way behind where the Democrats’ 2012 House candidate Pam Gulleson was in fundraising at this point in the cycle. And as of the last reports to the FEC, Sinner has a major campaign cash disadvantage to incumbent Republican Kevin Cramer.
Like a more than 2-to-1 cash disadvantage
The sinner campaign has tried to make a big deal out of the fact that they have raised about $107,000 more than Cramer over the last two reporting periods, but that probably has more to do with Sinner getting contributions from the Democrat fundraising base late in the campaign cycle, since he started so late, than any real momentum.
Because it just doesn’t seem as though Sinner has a lot of momentum. His campaign has been listless so far, highlighted by a clumsy assault on Cramer’s missed votes in the House that quickly turned into gaffe when it was revealed that Sinner himself took a vacation during the final, harried moments of North Dakota’s relatively short legislative session (Sinner, for those of you not paying attention, is a state Senator from Fargo).
Now it looks like Sinner may have lost his campaign manager.
I noticed that the Sinner campaign filed an amended Statement of Organization with the FEC yesterday. It’s a little odd for a campaign to amend this filing, so I took a look at what changed. Turns out, on the original filing from March Sinner listed campaign manager Dan Lipner’s email address. On the form filed yesterday, the email address changed to that of someone from Political CFOs, a company that hires out to campaigns to help with disclosure compliance.
That doesn’t necessarily mean Lipner has left, but then I searched for the guy on Google and found his Facebook page. Except, in the Google results it shows Lipner listing as his employer on Facebook the Sinner for Congress campaign:
Now Lipner’s Facebook page lists his employment simply as “Attorney.”
I’ve reached out to both Lipner and former Bismarck Tribune reporter Hannah Johnson, who is now working as Sinner’s communications director, but I haven’t heard back from either.
It appears as though Lipner has left Sinner’s campaign (per Facebook, he was back in Washington DC attending baseball games).
If political professionals are jumping ship from Sinner’s campaign mid-election, that’s obviously not a good sign.